Djokovic In Devastating Form In Monte-Carlo

Rafael Nadal Novak Djokovic

GETTYRafael Nadal could face Novak Djokovic for the first time in 11 months

But with Federer once again skipping the claycourt season, former US Open victor Cilic believes becoming the world's best player is a realistic goal after an excellent start to the year. Djokovic, who could potentially meet top seed and 10-time champion Rafael Nadal in the third round, has a 31-9 record at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament.

"That's why I am here, to play tennis and to accept all the rules".

The Japanese player, ranked 36th, came back in late February when he lost to Denis Shapovalov in the first round of the Mexico Open.

"Seeded nine, Djokovic, who is struggling to pick up the pace after an elbow injury, could face Nadal in the semi-finals although just getting a win under his belt would be a relief for the 30-year-old who triumphed in Monte Carlo in 2013 and 2015". A 10-time victor of this event, Nadal is simply gearing up for another run at his favorite grand slam, a tournament he'll be defending for the first time since 2014.

"That helps me. I love this event".

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'I always feel good when I am here, ' Nadal added.

It is no doubt that the Spaniard will be favourite to win in Monte-Carlo as he eyes winning the event for the 11th time in his Tennis career.

The 12-times Grand Slam victor ended his collaboration with head coach Andre Agassi and coach Radek Štěpánek earlier this month.

Former world number one Novak Djokovic showed signs of rediscovering his form with a dominant 6-0 6-1 victory over Dusan Lajovic in the opening round of the Monte Carlo Masters on Monday. Said a disappointed Nadal.

"The positive thing is probably you will control the time between points, but in the negative thing". The more free points, the better chance Bedene has of pulling off a rather big upset. "I had some good days of practice here, playing some good sets", Nadal said ahead of the start of the claycourt season.

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The shot clock was trialled during US Open qualifying previous year, and was also used at the 2017 NextGen Finals in Milan and the exhibition International Premier Tennis League. "In some cases it was working well and some cases not", said world number three Marin Cilic.

"Some ball boys were ready for that, some were better, some were not".

"I played only with the shot clock in IPTL and it was only 20 seconds".

Rising German star Alexander Zverev also brushed off any concerns, pointing out that he is one of the quickest players on tour alongside Australian Nick Kyrgios. Seeded players with byes in this segment are Lucas Pouille, Alexander Zverev, Pablo Carreno-Busta and Marin Cilic, while unseeded players with prospects in this bottom half of the draw include Richard Gasquet, Diego Schwartzman, Fabio Fognini, Kyle Edmund, and the victor of the mouthwatering Kei Nishikori and Tomas Berdych first-round clash, due to be played today.

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