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Monte Carlo Masters: Djokovic crashes out, Fritz survives scare in Monaco

By IANS Updated: Apr 13, 2022 1:29 am
Monte Carlo Masters
Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina slams a forehand to Serbia’s Novak Djokovic during their first round match at the Monte Carlo Masters tennis tournament on Tuesday. (PTI)

Monaco, April 12 (IANS): World number one Novak Djokovic crashed out of the Monte Carlo Masters, losing a Round of 32 clash to Alejandro Davidovich Fokina of Spain here on Tuesday.

The 22-year-old Spanish player Davidovich Fokina defeated the Serb 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-1 in the second-round match in two hours 54 minutes.

Struggling to impose his strokes in windy conditions, Djokovic, the top seed, sprayed too many mistakes and hit the exit door in only his second ATP tournament of the season while the Spaniard defended seven out of 11 break chances and delivered nine breaks from 20 opportunities to control the scoreboard in sets one and three.

Despite trailing by a break in the third set against wildcard Lucas Catarina of Monaco, the World No. 430, Taylor Fritz rallied for a 6-7(6), 7-6(5), 6-4 victory to reach the second round of the Monte Carlo Masters here on Tuesday.

The American will next play former World No. 3 Marin Cilic, who eliminated Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Monday.

Fritz is enjoying the best season of his career, having just lifted his first ATP Masters 1000 title in March at the BNP Paribas Open. The 10th seed, who is making his third appearance in the Principality, earned seven service breaks in his two-hour, 40-minute triumph.

Catarina played inspired tennis on home soil to take a 4-2 lead in the decider, but Fritz never panicked and used his big forehand to great effect in the big moments. The 24-year-old is now 18-6 on the season.

The air in Monaco brings out the best in Briton Daniel Evans, who defeated Frenchman Benjamin Bonzi 6-0, 7-6(4) on Tuesday to reach the second round. He will next face Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Also on Tuesday, Spaniard Pedro Martinez battled past Ugo Humbert to reach the second round in Monte Carlo for the first time. Martinez now faces another player for the first time, 11th seed Hubert Hurkacz, in his next match.

By IANS Updated: Apr 13, 2022 1:29:33 am