Djokovic thrashes Lajovic in Monte Carlo opener

Jose Verdugo
Abril 17, 2018

"It's not great but first match on clay, I'm expecting (a) little soreness", Nishikori said.

After one of the flattest months in the history of the ATP tour, world No1 Rafael Nadal made a welcome return to the stage in Monte Carlo on Sunday, and immediately livened things up with a sly dig at his oldrival Roger Federer. "I'm practicing well; I am playing with the right intensity I think".

The glitz and glamour of Monte Carlo is the setting for this week's action on the ATP Tour, with a prize fund of nearly €5m a suitable reward for the players good enough to make the 56-man draw.

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Nadal who is a 16-time Grand Slam victor will be eyeing his 11 title at the Monte Carlo Masters as he looks to win the tournament for the third time in a row.

"I love this event and the weather has been good".

Concerning his health and spontaneity in the game as he's about to return fully to action, he said: "I feel good", he said. I'm enjoying being here in Monte Carlo in an event that always brings me to the best feelings possible. That injury had ruled him out of last year's U.S. Open and this year's Australian Open.

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The younger Zverev brother, at [10.5], is the market second favourite, but doesn't have the best clay data (just a 108.9% combined hold/break percentage in the last 12 months), and his 16-4 clay record in this time period indicates he won a ton of tight matches, as is often the case with him.

Accompanied by his former coach Marian Vajda in Monte Carlo, Djokovic will be looking to snap a three-match losing streak and capture a first match victory since January. "That's why I am here, to play tennis and to accept all the rules". The more free points, the better chance Bedene has of pulling off a rather big upset.

Nadal argued that it would be tougher for players to recover between lengthy rallies if restricted to just 25 seconds, especially in front of a vocal crowd.

'He said that a couple of days ago - and I thought he would play Roland Garros.

A player who has somewhat of experience with the shot clock, Croatian star Marin Cilic has given his say on what he has noticed about the new system.

Mischa Zverev overcame a mid-match blip to defeat Canadian teenager Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-2 6-7 (4) 6-1 and reach the second round of the Monte Carlo Masters yesterday.

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