Federer in Fine Form, Raonic Impresses; Nadal Begins Bid For Seventh Straight Monte Carlo Title
by Staff | April 13th, 2011, 12:48 am

Roger Federer showed his game is already in full flight on the clay with a devasting 6-2, 6-1 win over Philipp Kohlschreiber in second round play at the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters.

Federer, who has never won the Monte Carlo title, breezed past the German in just 50 minutes.

“I think [it was] clearly a good start for me into the clay-court season,” said Federer who is 6-0 lifetime against Kohlschreiber. “I varied it well that he couldn’t play his game. I was consistent, consistently dangerous, too. I felt well in the offence, and in the defence I was fine. There’s no real secrets out there. That’s why I’m particularly pleased he wasn’t able to exploit any of my, let’s say, weaknesses, and that I was able to do all that really.”

With Novak Djokovic resting a knee, Federer’s main rival this week will be clay king Rafael Nadal who makes his debut on his favorite surface Wednesday against Jarkko Nieminen.

“[Rafa is] clearly the overwhelming favourite for this tournament, even though I haven’t seen him play yet,” Federer said. “He obviously has a big affection for this place here. To win the tournament six times in a row, I know how hard it is. I don’t think I’ve done it anywhere. So this is something very special for him, going for number seven. He’ll try his very best and he’ll be hard to beat.”

Federer will play the winner of the Pere Riba-Marin Cilic match on Thursday.

Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was the upset on Tuesday. Tsonga was ousted by Croat Ivan Ljubicic 7-6(2), 6-4.

Young phenom Milos Raonic continues to impress. The Canadian won just his fourth career clay match beating Ernests Gulbis 6-4, 7-5. The 20-year-old showed some signs of nerves when he was unable to close out the Latvian serving 5-4, 40-0 in the second set.

“I don’t think I’ve ever done that before,” Raonic said of the 6-4 game. “Knowing here it’s tough to get the free points with the serve… I think I just played a sloppy first one, then after that just nerves got a bit in the way. But I was happy with how I sort of put it all together right after. I was able to reel off a few points in a row. I just tried as best as I could to keep it under control. I’m happy with the outcome.”

Raonic’s win should move him into the Top 30 and all but assure him of a French Open seeding. Up next could be am Australian Open rematch with David Ferrer who first must beat countryman Felicano Lopez.

Tomas Berdych joined Federer, Ljubicic and Raonic in the third round.

Also, Gilles Simon and Felicano Lopez were among the first round winners.

On Wednesday, in addition to the return of Nadal who has won his last 32 matches in Monte Carlo, Andy Murray will try to break out of a two-month losing spell against Radek Stepanek. Frenchmen Richard Gasquet and Gael Monfils are also in action.


COURT CENTRAL start 10:30 am
G Garcia-Lopez (ESP) vs [13] R Gasquet (FRA)
Not Before 11:30AM
D Gimeno-Traver (ESP) vs [8] G Monfils (FRA)
Not Before 1:30 PM
[1] R Nadal (ESP) vs J Nieminen (FIN)
[3] [WC] A Murray (GBR) vs [WC] R Stepanek (CZE)
L Dlouhy (CZE) / J Tipsarevic (SRB) vs G Monfils (FRA) / J Tsonga (FRA)

COURT DES PRINCES start 10:30 am
F Lopez (ESP) vs [4] D Ferrer (ESP)
Not Before 11:30 AM
A Montanes (ESP) vs [16] G Simon (FRA)
[6] F Verdasco (ESP) vs T Robredo (ESP)
[7] J Melzer (AUT) vs R Haase (NED)

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28 Comments for Federer in Fine Form, Raonic Impresses; Nadal Begins Bid For Seventh Straight Monte Carlo Title

Nims Says:

I believe Roger has again given false hopes to his fans and tennis fraternity. It was a very decent match he played, but a very poor match played by Kohls. Not sure how much of credit Roger has to take from this match, not it gives any indication of his next match. The big question mark for Roger is can he compete with the Top 5 anymore once he reaches the semis. Looks like he is good enough to reach semis for most of the events he is into probably except FO.


Wait and watch and you will see

Skeezerweezer Says:

Rafa crushes in rd 1. Check.
Hot Sauce turning into frozen yogurt.
Ferrer back in his own bed.

Lulu Iberica Says:

^^^Rafa did crush, but needs to tighten things up and not give away match points. Andy M’s looking good against Steps right now, up 2 breaks in the first. Looks like he’s getting back on track.

madmax Says:

Margot, where are you?

Good luck to murray.

He is back in the groove. First set. Played a fine performance, very aggressive. About time.


Fed said in his interview that Kohls did not play his best tennis. But a win is a win, he’ll just have to make sure he stays focussed as he moves through the tournament.

It’s cilic next.

Colin Says:

I just peeked at another forum (I won’t name it!) and straight away saw one of the things that irritates me. Why will Americans say “announcers” when they mean “commentators”?

skeezerweezer Says:

^ True Colin, in America we often are lazy with our words and phrases. Often at times we don’t even know the meaning behind the words we say.

I have observed this. That “Commentators” should stick to commentating and “Announcers” should stick to announcing!! :)

Colin Says:

On the other hand the American meaning of “public school” is perfectly accurate, while the British meaning is exactly opposite, and means a posh and expensive fee-charging establishment.
To get back on-topic, thank goodness Andy Murray has woken up from his nightmare. As someone said on BBC radio, he ought to do well on clay, because in fact his game is well-suited to the surface.

jane Says:

Yay for Murray!

dari Says:

No false hopes from roger fans, Nims, at least not this one. In all the comments I’ve read post-match, he says he is happy for the win, knows kohls was having an off day and will have to wait till next match to see how he is doing. He even said a tougher match might have been nice.
I agree with your big question, and we will just have to watch and see what happens. Can’t wait.

Polo Says:

Federer can compete with Nadal and Djokovic. The rest from number 4 down are not really in the thick of the fight right now. Check out how Murray, Soderling, etc have been doing recently. Therefore, the top three rightfully belong there.

Nina Says:

Hot Sauce turning into frozen yogurt.

LOL Skee!

Tennis Vagabond Says:

What an incredible day of tennis for tomorrow! Rafa vs Gasquet; Federer vs Cilic; Ferrer vs Raonic; Murray vs Simon

Four matches I would love to see in the third round. Awesome.

Kimmi Says:

very happy for murray :) hope he can keep it up, simon will be tough but murray has to know that he is better.

vagabond – yap, great matches tomorrow. the only one i am sure about is Nadal..but c’mon gasquet, give him a run for him money.

Kimmi Says:

I see murray has decides to bring his old hair style back..
if this is what he needs to win matches then bring it on muzza! but i think his short hair suits him much better..

jane Says:

Kimmi, I cannot figure it out except that those really super pictures that margot pointed out on Murray’s World, where he is in the white button up shirt are older photos, because Andy’s hair is today’s match was wild and wooly – very curly and longer. Must be the coastal humidity ;). But you are right: who cares so long as he wins. I havr him through to meet la Monf next round in my bracket, but they both have to get there. Fingers crossed! (though I really like Simon, but Murray needs the wins more right now).

Agree with Tennis Vagabond – great matches tomorrow, a.k.a. middle of the night for me. Might have to take a peek.

Kimmi Says:

Muzza and his brother used to have this wild look a while back. After muzza started winning and getting more into public eye, sponsers etc he cut his hair, always keep it short and very smart. I remember during the days he was wearing fred perry gear, tight shorts at wimbledon.. he looked great.

I think murray is probably sad or depressed, he doesn’t seem to care about his look anymore. Does he do and sponsors work? they would sure tell him to cut that wild hair??

i remember federer once said since he started working with Gillette, he is not allow to grow his beard anymore, he has to shave it everyday.

Kimmi Says:

s/b “does he do any sponsors work?”

Kimmi Says:

OK, i watched murray interview (video clip), his hair is not too bad. I guess after a shower it does not look too bad. Could be the humidity as you say jane :)

jane Says:

Lol Kimmi. I think he must do some sponsor work in the UK, but do not know for sure. I liked the Fred Perry get ups alright, but it might be better he shed that skin, if you know what I mean. ;) He should win tomorrow: h2h is 4-1 for Andy & theyve played on all surfaces I think

dari Says:

I swear I said the exact thing about the anachronisticity of those photo a few days ago. But if absolute wild clown hair gets you some wins, go at it!
I was thinking that its a bit extreme.that Rog has to shave everyday, but if you work out the math and give him even a measely 1 million $ per year with Gillette, he is still making about 3,000$ every time he shaves. No doubt his actual endorsement deal is worth much more than 1 mill per year 3.5 mill at the very least and that make about 10 grand every shave. Totally worth it.
Can you spare a few for my vacation, Rog?

Kimmi Says:

dari – i like the maths :) i think with all that money, rog now loves his look too much, i like what i see tough.

is it just me, or is rafa looking better and better now-a-days. Could someone be dressing him up?

Nole has always been very smart. I have always liked his look off court. i can tell he always take his time to make himself look good..and he does.

dari Says:

Rafa is looking better, tis true, kimmi.
Novak does seem like he likes to get dressed, have seen some good outfits from him even a few years back.
In the article Jane posted and other articles I’ve read, I like how novak is painted as a mix between Rafa and roger. I think it holds on- court and style-wise

dari Says:

Just read that ‘nando is out of the top ten after his loss today. Not surprised. With him and Andy R out, and youzhny down a few stops, too, the top ten is just begging for somebody to step up and step in.

jane Says:

Interesting dari – I wonder who? I am glad you thought that article was okay. I found some of the speculation about Fedal, pressure for Rafa and not as much for Roger, etc., to be intriguing anyhow. Wish all this clay tennis wasn’t in the middle of the night. : /

dari Says:

Gael managed to sneak his way in- while injured no less!
Honestly, I don’t love reading everybody’s take on will they won’t they rivalry trivalry, end of fedal, blah blah, but I did like parts of that article. The part I mentioned and pretty much the idea of roger being the one to spoil Rafa’s sweet seven party ;)
We will just watch the tennis and see! It’s early in the am for these matches on the east coast. Won’t be up at 430 for the milos daveed match, but 630-7 is a perfectly fine time to start the day.

steve-o Says:

Ferrer dusted Raonic in the first set, 6-1. Hopefully the second will be more interesting.

steve-o Says:

Second set only slightly more interesting, 6-3 to Ferrer.

Raonic clearly gave it his all, but his footwork needs a lot of improving if he wants to play on clay. Still, a valiant effort against a very tough clay-court player.

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