The Monte Carlo Open 2023

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Mar 31, 2023, 18:09

there are 2 minor tournaments during  the coming  week and most of the senior players are not going to bother with those and they never are indicative as to what will happen with those two tournaments.   Getting info and putting it on site is rather time-consuming and I think I will rather spend time in dealing with the next APT1000 Masters tournament in Monte Carlo starting on 9 April 2023 with the qualification rounds being played on 7-9 April 2023.

As to that tournament there are some comments coming out in the media that is not aways convincing.   Monte Carlo was supposed to be the comeback tournament for Nadal.   In his latest comments Nadal refused to confirm that he was ready for a return and whether he will in fact play is not clear.   Be it as it May - Nadal is the number 14 ranked player in the world at present and that ranking makes a return by him more difficult.

There are also some pranked players who dislike playing on clay surfaces and those players are going to find it hard to maintain their present ranking in the world.   Amongst those are -

*    Djokovic - whose only benefit in the ranking race last year was poor and he has very little to defend  this year;

*    Medvedev, Fritz, Khachanov and Tiafoe could find the clay season difficult to stay in contention in the ranking race;

*    Alcaraz, Tsitsipas, Ruud and  Rublev claim they are better playing on clay than on other surfaces - they could from a ranking perspective benefit from the clay court tournaments.                             

Apr 06, 2023, 16:53

The following players will not take part in the Monte Carlo Open are Nadal, Alcara and Auger Aliassime - so 2 of the Top 10 ranked players will be absent from the tournament. The drfaws are not out yet but the seeds will be determined       

Apr 07, 2023, 04:52

Seeds for tournament 

1        Novak Djokovic                     -        7160

2        Stefanos Tsitsipas                 -         5770

3        Danill Medvedev                   -       5150

4        Casper Ruud                        -         5005      

5        Andre  Rublev                      -         3470

6       Jannik Sinner                    -            3345

7        Holger Rune                      -            3325

8        Taylor Fritz                        -            3065

9       Karen Khachanov               -           2855

10      Hubert Hurkacz                 -            2750

11      Cameron Norrie                  -           2735

12      Frances Tiafoe                    -           2665

13      Alexander Zverev               -           2410

14      Alex de Minaur                 -             2050

15      Borna Coric                       -            1890

16     Lorenzo Musetti                 -            1840

Apr 07, 2023, 20:51



Top half of the Draw

1       Novak Djokovic                                     vs                            Ivan Gakhov

16     Lorenzo Musetti                                     vs                            Luca Nardi

10     Hubert Hurkacz                                       vs                           Jack Draper

6      Jannik Sinner                                          vs                            Diego  Schwartzman

3       Danill Medvedev                                    vs                            Lorenzo  Sonego

13     Alexander Zverev                                   vs                            Roberto Bautista-Agut

Francisco  Cerundolo                                       vs                            Matteo Berrettini

7      Holger Rune                                             vs                            Dominic Thiem

Bottom Half of the Draw

5      Andrey Rublev                                        vs                            Jaume Munar

9      Karen Khachanov                                   vs                            Ilya  Ivashka

14    Alex de Minaur                                       vs                            Jan-Lennard  Struff

4      Casper  Ruud                                         vs                            Botic van de Zandschulp

8       Taylor Fritz                                            vs                            Stan  Wawrinka

Grigor   Dimitrov                                           vs                            Jiri  Lehecka

Nicolas  Jarry                                                 vs                            Alexei Popyrin

2      Stefanos Tsitsipas                             vs                            Benjamen  Bonzi

Apr 13, 2023, 09:33



Top half of the Draw

1     Novak Djokovic                         vs             16     Lorenzo Musetti

6     Jannik Sinner                              vs            10      Hubert Hurkacz                

3     Danill Medvedev                        vs             13      Alexander Zverev

7      Holger Rune                              vs             Matteo Berrettin           

Bottom Half of the Draw

5       Andrey Rublev                          vs              9         Karen Khachanov

4      Casper  Ruud                             vs              Jan-Lennard  Struff

8      Taylor Fritz                                vs              Jiri  Lehecka

2      Stefanos Tsitsipas                      vs              Nicolas  Jarry

Apr 13, 2023, 09:34



Top Half of the Draw

 3      Danill Medvedev                  vs        7     Holger Rune

 6     Jannik Sinner                         vs        16     Lorenzo Musetti

Bottom Half of the Draw

  2     Stefanos Tsitsipas                 vs         8    Taylor  Fritz

  5     Andrey Rublev                     vs         Jan-Lennard  Struff  

Apr 13, 2023, 22:31



 5     Andrey Rublev                            vs        8    Taylor  Fritz

 6     Jannik Sinner                               vs        7    Holger Rune   

So Djokovic was doing one round better than he did in 2022    In 2022 he lost in Round 2 was against Daniel Evans.   This time around it is against Lorenzo Musetti,   Granted Musetti is a far better player than Evans - but the fact is that Djokovic is not match-fit and that is the result of not participating regular in ATP matches.   In 2022  Djokovic went from Monte Carlo to Belgrade where he was badly beaten by Rublev in the ATP 250 match there.  Where will he go thsi year?   The upcoming tournaments he could play are as follows:-

*    Barcelona Open - APT 500

*     Madrid Open    -  APT 1000

*     Italian Open  -  APT 1000

Ther are some minor ATP 250 tournaments   during the next month before Roland Garros as well - but those are not really good enough to ensure recovery of match-fitness before Roland Garros.   .           

Ruud did badly in the Aussie Open this year compared to 2022 and then decided he was going to take a break from playing in tournaments in February 2023.   Since his return his performances were all sub-standard and it is no surprise that eh lost yesterday against an unseeded player Struff.   Unless there is a drastic improvement in coming tournaments he is going to be out of the Top 10 ranked players this year.

Nadal s now ranked 14th in the World.  He was supposed to return from injury in the Monte Carlo tournament - but now there is uncertainty if he would even play in the Roland Garros Tournament a month from now.   If he does not play in Rolland Garros his rating would drop by 2 000 points to 715 ranking points  - which means that he will be at circa 76 ranking points.                        



Apr 14, 2023, 14:40



 5     Andrey Rublev                   vs                     7     Holger Rune  

So who is going to win in the final?      The bookmaker favorite is Rune, but what about the way Rublev dismantled  Fritz in the second and third sets in the semi, Rublev must have a chance to win.    Rublev is totally unpredictable in tournaments - as well as he played in the semi today so bad he could be in final.

Lets hope for a competitive and top class performance match.    If Rune wins he would take the number 6 ranking from Rublev making him the number 7 ranked player.


Apr 16, 2023, 15:46

Congrats to Rublev - his fellow players regard him as a top person,.  It is the first ATP 1000 title won by Rublev and I am sure that he will try to win some more finals on that level.  

  I wrote elsewhere about Rune and Sinner - 2 brilliant youngsters - they will make hay in years to come.   

Apr 16, 2023, 17:53

Odd final ….hard to say how much the cramping was effecting Rune, but generally Roob had the upper hand in the ground shot rallies. Still Rune had the game on his racket and then faded away with little resistance. He had a fine tournament though beating some big names.

Apr 17, 2023, 01:22

Maybe you are right.   The youngsters seems to  have minor injuries due in part to overplay in tournaments.  Physical strength is still being developing in them.    That is why I think their coaches should ensure they have enough breaks in between tournaments.   In the cases of the three top kids - Alcaraz,  Skinner and Rune - their careers should be regarded as  marathons - not 100 meter races.   By the way the last match-up between Rune and  Rublev was in the Aussie Open this year.   Rublev won that one in a five-setter - with Rune suffering from cramps towards the end of the match.       

I see Rublev has after many years changed his coaching set-up.   I have noticed in this tournament that he is fighting back when under pressure.   That may be a permanent change for the better - in  the past he would panic and then self-destruct.   

His rematch in Belgrade with Djokovic this week will show whether that trend continue.    Last year both Djokovic and Rublev went out early in the series and went to play in the same tournament in Belgrade trying to get some real game time on clay before Roland Garros.   Both were not making progress 2022   The tournament tennis played since the Aussie Open played by Djokovic has been substandard - it followed the same route - poor in Dubai and really the same in Monte Carlo.   Last year Rublev was the tournament winner in Dubai and runner-up in the same tournament this year - while winning in Monte Carlo. 

Rublev this year is in good form - Djokovic is not.    One could be rather surprised by the Rublev decision to go the Belgrade route again - but Rublev promised the crowd last year that he would come back this year to defend his title and he would keep his promise.        

One would have to see what happened this year.    Last year Rublev was a complete outsider and I put R200 win bet on him - won circa R600.    Yesterday I had a small bet on Rublev winning in Monte Carlo and I think I should put the winnings on Rublev repeating his win over Djokovic in Belgrade.          




Apr 17, 2023, 12:05

The Joker isn’t in shape for anything challenging yet. It may take till Paris or even Wimbledon to see him in best form. 

Roob’s fight back yesterday had a lot to do with Rune’s fade….it remains to be seen if he can really prevail over a top5 opponent in a final.  

The commentators missed one of the weirdest things I've seen in tennis. Roob was obsessing about Rune catching the lines. Finally after examining another ball mark just on the base line, he broke into a rant and spat on the offending line…funny stuff from an odd bloke.

Apr 17, 2023, 12:35


Just for the record.  In the Aussie Open Rublev and Rune was involved in a match.   It went on over 5 sets - in the fifth set tiebreak  Rune was leading  5-0 - yet Rublev won the tiebreak (over est over 10 points 11-9.   Yesterday Rune was in the final set 4-1 up when Rublev broke back in a Rune serve and h e tie went to 4-4 - after which Rublev won 3 games against Rune's 1 game.   

Could have something to do with self-confidence - which could need some counselling to get over it.     

Apr 17, 2023, 12:35


Just for the record.  In the Aussie Open Rublev and Rune was involved in a match.   It went on over 5 sets - in the fifth set tiebreak  Rune was leading  5-0 - yet Rublev won the tiebreak (over est over 10 points 11-9.   Yesterday Rune was in the final set 4-1 up when Rublev broke back in a Rune serve and h e tie went to 4-4 - after which Rublev won 3 games against Rune's 1 game.   

Could have something to do with self-confidence - which could need some counselling to get over it.     

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