A quarter-finalist in Paris in two of the past three years, the seventh seed cut a particularly dejected figure 12 months ago after he bowed to Marin Cilic in a five-set thriller.
This year he may well need to pass third seed Novak Djokovic to break his Grand Slam quarter-final duck.
No mean feat, given he snared just seven games from the Serb at that stage in Melbourne this year.
“I was doing so many already these kind of comments, ‘oh s---’ (I have a bad draw to) ‘now I have a good draw, this is the moment’,” Rublev said. “All of them fell apart, so I just let it go.”
His relationship with Paris, he joked, was complicated ahead of his first-round clash with Laslo Djere.
“I don't know, a bit toxic,” he grinned. “I have really great memories in Paris and I have really tough memories that were lessons for me, so we will see but in general I enjoy always outside the tournament.”