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Djokovic strolls into Monte Carlo third round

(Reuters) - Novak Djokovic opened his Monte Carlo Masters title defense with a 6-1 6-0 demolition of Spanish qualifier Albert Montanes on Tuesday to reach the third round on Tuesday. In his first claycourt match of the season, the Serbian world number two won 11 games in succession from 1-1 in a 45-minute stroll on center court.

Tennis: Djokovic thumps Montanes in Monte Carlo

Novak Djokovic stormed into the third round of the Monte Carlo Masters as the defending champion won his 11th straight match of the season 6-1, 6-0 over Albert Montanes on Tuesday. The second seed is bidding for a trophy at his fifth straight Masters 1000 after ending last season as winner at Shanghai and Paris before sweeping Indian Wells and Miami last month. He won the last 11 games in a row, finishing in 45 minutes and improving to 17-2 on the season.

Tennis: Federer back as Nadal seeks ninth Monte Carlo title

Roger Federer returns to the Monte Carlo Masters starting on Sunday with a mission to try and topple king of clay Rafael Nadal as the Spaniard seeks an unprecedented ninth title in the principality. Federer, his season taking flight and his ranking back to a more-than-respectable world number four, last competed at the optional Masters in 2011, when he was shuttled out in a quarter-final surprise by Austrian Jurgen Melzer.

Tennis: Claycourt titles factfile

Claycourt title factfiles ahead of the Monte Carlo Masters which begins on Sunday: Rafael Nadal Career titles: 62 Career clay titles: 43 Roger Federer Career titles: 78 Career clay titles: 10 Novak Djokovic Career titles: 43 Career clay titles: 8 Andy Murray Career titles: 28 Career clay titles: 0 Note: Murray not playing in Monte Carlo afp

Tennis: Nadal still king in claycourt game of thrones

It's not quite mission impossible, but the first shots in the battle to dethrone Rafael Nadal as French Open champion are about to be fired in the upmarket surrounds of the Monte Carlo Country Club. These skirmishes follow a similar pattern each year. Nadal will usually win at least three claycourt tour events in the European spring, surviving the odd scare, on his way to another familiar Sunday afternoon of crowning glory on the crushed red brick surface of Roland Garros.

Tennis: Gasquet back in top ten as Nadal stays No 1

Frenchman Richard Gasquet broke back into the top ten of the ATP rankings released on Monday while there were no other changes in the top 20 after Davis Cup competition dominated the weekend. Gasquet, a former Wimbledon and US Open semi-finalist, swops places with big serving Canadian Milos Raonic who drops to number 11.

Nadal impatient for return to favored clay courts

MADRID (Reuters) - Rafa Nadal is eager to get back to his favored clay after what he called a "good but not fantastic" start to the year with two titles and two runners-up spots, the world number one said on Wednesday. Spaniard Nadal, 27, won on the hard courts in Doha at the start of the season before a back injury wrecked his chances in the Australian Open final at the end of January.

Tennis: Nadal hopes to fine tune form ahead of clay swing

Rafael Nadal says he still has work to do on his game as he gets set to launch his claycourt season which the Spaniard hopes culminates with his ninth French Open title. World number one Nadal lost in straight sets in the final of the Miami Masters tournament on Sunday to second seed Novak Djokovic. Djokovic cruised to a 6-3, 6-3 win as he easily dismantled Nadal who has been hampered by a back injury which wrecked his Australian Open bid earlier this year.

Nadal remains atop the ATP rankings

Madrid, Mar 31 (EFE).- Spain's Rafael Nadal and Serbia's Novak Djokovic continue to battle for first place in the ATP rankings, with the Spaniard holding on to the No. 1 spot despite his loss to the Serbian in the final in Miami over the weekend. Nadal has 13,730 points, but Djokovic has slowly closed the gap between them and now has 11,810 points. Switzerland's Stanislas Wawrinka, who beat Nadal in the final of this year's Australian Open, is in third place with 5,740 points.

Tennis: Djokovic routs Nadal to win fourth Miami title

Six-time Grand Slam winner Novak Djokovic claimed his fourth Miami Masters crown with a dominating straight sets win over world number one Rafael Nadal on Sunday. Second seed Djokovic cruised to a 6-3, 6-3 win in the men's final of the combined ATP and WTA Tour hardcourt tournament. "I played a great match everything was working really well," Djokovic said. "I didn't give him a chance to come back in the match. I am really excited."
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