There were no major upsets on day 3 of the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters as Novak Djokovic sailed through to the third round with a 6-1 6-0 thrashing of Albert Montanes in just 45 minutes. Three seeds fell as Jerzy Janowicz, Mikhail Youzhny and Kevin Anderson all lost in the first round. Janowicz continues to labour as he lost to Michael Llodra, 6-4 6-2, a very ropey result considering it was on clay. He appeared to come back from a foot injury too early at the Australian Open, but is playing week in, week out so one would guess he is fully fit. Anderson lost first round in Casablanca too. He was beaten today in straight sets by Gael Monfils. I read tweets a few weeks ago that the Frenchman was taking a break from the game…
1. Stanislas Wawrinka v Marin Cilic (ATP Monte-Carlo, R2)
Wednesday’s match of the day is fourth up Court Central featuring Stanislas Wawrinka and Marin Cilic. Since winning the Australian Open in January, Wawrinka’s form has been patchy. He started his first tournament in Indian Wells with real convinction, but fell in the round of 16 to Kevin Anderson. He lost at the same stage in Miami to Alexandr Dolgopolov and was less than convincing in Davis Cup action as he lost in four sets to the world ranked number 67, Andrey Golubev. Cilic needed three sets to get past Marinko Matosevic, 6-1 3-6 6-2 in the first round. The Aussie was drafted in late when Fernando Verdasco pulled out of the draw.
Cilic’s form this year has been promising despite a second round exit in Miami where he didn’t look to be feeling too well in a straight sets loss to Edouard Roger-Vasselin. Wawrinka has won five of their seven clashes including all three on clay. The most recent of those clay court tussles was in 2008 at Roland Garros when Stan won in straight sets. Cilic has one match under his belt and the more convincing form of late; however there is no doubt that Wawrinka is the more talented and capable player on this surface. My confidence in Stan is wavering, but I believe he’ll have enough to get past the dangerous Croatian.
Prediction: Wawrinka d. Cilic in 3 sets
For all the Masters events, TennisTV produce a hot shot of the day. Tuesday’s by Andreas Seppi, which can be seen by clicking on the link in the tweet below, was REALLY special.
Monte-Carlo 2nd Round Predictions
Rafael Nadal d. Teymuraz Gabashvili in 2 easy sets
Pablo Andujar d. Andreas Seppi in 3 sets
Grigor Dimitrov d. Albert Ramos in 3 sets
Nicolas Almagro d. Nicolas Mahut in 2 sets
Tommy Robredo d. Julien Benneteau in 2 very tight sets
Milos Raonic d. Yen-Hsun Lu in 3 sets
Fabio Fognini d. Roberto Bautista-Agut in 3 sets
Michael Llodra d. Lukas Rosol in 3 sets
Roger Federer d. Radek Stepanek in 2 tight sets
Alexandr Dolgopolov d. Gullermo Garcia-Lopez in 2 sets
Pablo Carreno Busta d. Gael Monfils in 3 sets