Wednesday, 18 April 2018

France lose five in Monte Carlo

The first round of the Monte Carlo Masters has been put to bed, giving some of the top seeds the chance to take court for second round matches after an initial bye.

Five Frenchman were involved in the remaining opening round encounters, and due to the nature of the draw, we had two all French matches.

Wildcard Gilles Simon keeps coming up with surprises, and he did again, knocking out compatriot Adrian Mannarino (16) 6-3 4-6 6-2.

Mannarino will be regretting not using any of the 7 break points he had in set one, while Simon converted the single opportunity that came his way.

Although Mannarino levelled the match, it was Simon, with excellent return of serve, who controlled the deciding third and final set.

Richard Gasquet was the other French representative to delete a fellow countryman from contention.  He defeated qualifier Jeremy Chardy in two close sets 6-4 7-6(5)

The fifth man from France on court for first round action today, Benoit Paire, will return to his Swiss residence straight away, courtesy of Feliciano Lopez.  The Spaniard outlasted Paire 5-7 7-6(5) 6-4.

Finalists from last weeks 2 tournaments, Tennys Sandgren and Kyle Edmund, both lost first round battles, to Philipp Kohlschreiber and qualifier Andreas Seppi respectively.  However, seeds Diego Schwartzman (13) and Fabio Fognini (13) are safely through, even with Schwartzman dropping his first set to Guido Pella 6-0.

Five second round matches were played, all of these featuring seeds:

Sascha Zverev (3) defeated Gilles Muller 4-6 6-3 6-2

Grigor Dimitrov (4) defeated qualifier Pierre-Hugues Herbert 

3-6 6-2 6-4

Dominic Thiem (5) took two hours forty minutes to defeat Andrey Rublev 5-7 7-5 7-5

David Goffin (6) defeated qualifier Stefanos Tsitsipas 7-6(4) 7-5

Mischa Zverev joined his brother in the third round by upsetting Lucas Pouille (7) 2-6 6-1 7-6(3).

The losses of Pouille and Herbert completed a bad day for France - two winners and five vanquished (2 at the hands of fellow countrymen)

Tomorrow will see the first appearance of the top two seeds Rafa Nadal (1) and Marin Cilic (2).

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