Nadal, Djokovic Cruise Into Monte Carlo Quarters; Zverev, Thiem Tumble Out
by Staff | April 18th, 2019, 5:53 pm

Tournament favorites Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic continued their march toward a Sunday showdown in Monte Carlo.

Nadal won his 17th straight match at the event he has taken 11 times, dropping just one game after reaching 4-all in the first in a 6-4, 6-1 victory over the Bulgarian.

“I felt good. I think that the first set was a high-quality set of tennis,” said Nadal who improves to 12-1 against Dimitrov. “The second set were a little bit more mistakes and the wind was even [greater] later in the match. The wind is for both of us, and of course always have an impact. That’s what happen when you play outdoors. These things are part of the game and just try to be ready for it.”

Nadal is now 70-4 in Monte Carlo. He’s also won his last 14 matches on clay. Up next will be Guido Pella who bounced former French semifinalist Marco Cecchinato 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

“I am happy the way that I am playing. The first two rounds I played more than well enough to win. I had two confident scores against two good players,” Nadal said. “First matches after an injury, that’s always a tough thing to come back. At the same time, different surface, on clay after almost a year. So that’s a good start for me on the clay court season.”

Two-time champ Djokovic was rusty in his opening round win over Philipp Kohlschreiber, but today he rolled in a 6-3, 6-0 win over Taylor Fritz. He’ll face another youngster in Daniil Medvedev who toughed out Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-2, 1-6, 6-4.

“[Daniil] has improved his movement a lot, I think. Obviously his results are showing that he’s close to the Top 10,” said Djokovic. “He’s definitely in the form of his life. He’s had a good tournament so far here, winning quite comfortably in the first two matches and then now against Tsitsipas today.

“We have never faced each other on clay. We have faced each other in a close four-setter in Australia this year… I have seen him play. I have practiced with him many times. I’m looking forward to it.”

Two top seeds tumbled out as clay expert Dominic Thiem was stunned by Dusan Lajovic 6-3, 6-3 and Fabio Fognini foiled 2018 semifinalist Alexander Zverev 6-3, 6-1.

“I’m very happy today. I didn’t expect this, especially not in two sets against a player like Dominic,” Lajovic said. “This was for sure my best match in my life, I think. I produced some great tennis from the beginning until the end of the match and I’m very happy to be in the quarter-finals in Monaco.”

Zverev, who has 3-5 in his last eight matches, fell apart after playing the Italian tough to 3-all in the first.

“I’m really happy. Happy because I was always losing with him, but it was a really tough match,” Fognini said. “He’s No. 3 in the world, even if he’s playing his best tennis. I’m really happy.”

Lajovic will meet the surprise qualifier Lorenzo Sonego for a spot in a first Masters semi for either. Sonego upended Cameron Norrie.

Fognini will face Borna Coric, a 6-4, 6-2 winner over Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

“Coric is a really good fighter. He fights a lot. He won so many matches last year,” Fognini said. “I have to be happy for sure and enjoy my match from tonight, recover well, that’s the most important thing and try my best.”

Just 2 of the Top 8 seeds, Nadal and Djokovic, made the quarterfinals.

COURT RAINIER III start 11:00 am
Dusan Lajovic (SRB) vs [Q] Lorenzo Sonego (ITA)
[1] Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs [10] Daniil Medvedev (RUS)
Guido Pella (ARG) vs [2] Rafael Nadal (ESP)
[9] Borna Coric (CRO) vs [13] Fabio Fognini (ITA)

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9 Comments for Nadal, Djokovic Cruise Into Monte Carlo Quarters; Zverev, Thiem Tumble Out

Daniel Says:

Medvedev had MTO and Djoko got broken after double faulting on Game Point. Thought the match was his and now he is 1-3 behind.

Medveded usung the same venom as Djoko with several drop shots.

Daniel Says:

By Djoko. Double break for Medvedev. Was loking forward to Djoko x Nadal final. madal
Nadal has a by to #12 unless Fognini decides to play tomorrow, that if he reaches there.

skeezer Says:

Djoker out. He should have WB on his team.

j-kath Says:

Nadal is not having an easy match so far….Pela has only once beaten one of the top players ie Cilic – of course, still a bit to go in this match. As for Novak…..hard to believe he’s slipping back to “a shadow of himself” – what bad timing.

FedExpress Says:

What a choke job by Pella in the first set.

chrisford1 Says:

WTF is Pepe doing back in camp? I thought Marian Vadja banned him as a bad influence on Djokovic….

I’m absolutely disgusted. Not just with Pepe poisoning the well again but brother and poisoner Marko —-AND with Novak who seems to place such value on the two being around that he thinks it’s worth another round of career destruction. Not only as an active tennis player but the risk of no endorsements later because unlike Fed Andy, even OCD Rafa Nadal – Djokovic is getting the taint of being a disturbed headcase.
Flash forward to the future. What retired tennis star would the CEO of China Air want as it takes over dozens of US and Canada routes? Roger? Rafa? Serena? Agassi? Even Andy? Or some guru-following 47 year old organic wood pith nibbling oddball from Serbia arrested in Italy for spray painting pink hearts on roads and buildings??

I wonder if the Serbian media is going into this in any more detail than Western media is.
WTF may be a little salty, but it’s what us poor Djokovic fans are thinking.

Django Says:

Please copy and paste your post and send to @djokernole
Probably wants to retire soon …I’m sick of his wife and brother. Yuck

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