LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 17: Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates after winning match point in his semi finals singles match against Kevin Anderson of South Africa during Day Seven of the Nitto ATP Finals at The O2 Arena on November 17, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Fred Lee/Getty Images)
ATP Monte Carlo Rolex Masters 2019 | Latest Tennis Schedules & Draws
The World No. 1 and two-time champion comes into the clay court season, perhaps missing a little bit of the form we were expecting after he started the year with a record-making Australian Open title. However, coming into Monte Carlo, he might be less than pleased to see his Indian Wells third round conqueror Philipp Kohlschreiber up first for him.
Djokovic’s Path to final (Seeding/Rankings)
R2: Philipp Kohlschreiber
R3: Kyle Edmund 
QF: Stefanos Tsitsipas 
SF: Karen Khachanov 
F: Rafael Nadal 
Britain’s Kyle Edmund ought to be his third round opponent but it has been a bit of a shaky start to his clay court season with an early exit from Marrakech, where he was defending final points, and with Stefanos Tsitsipas on the rise already this year, he might welcome a chance to meet fellow ‘veteran’ Rafael Nadal by the end of the week.
The real question is how well has Nadal recovered from the knee injury that saw him withdraw from his semi-final in Indian Wells. He had looked troubled throughout his quarter-final with Karen Khachanov, and it is obvious he has his eyes on the prize in Paris.
Nadal’s Path to final (Seeding/Rankings)
R2: Roberto Bautista Agut
R3: Denis Shapovalov 
QF: Marin Cilic 
SF: Alexander Zverev 
F: Novak Djokovic 
It is not the easiest of starts for him against compatriot Roberto Bautista Agut, and his run in to the final could see him against another name in the frame to make something happen at Roland Garros. With Monte Carlo playing quite slow, Alexander Zverev could make things hard for Nadal, and if Djokovic is anything like in the form we expect coming into the second Slam of the year, this is not an easy comeback for the Spaniard.
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The wait for Zverev to make his mark on the Grand Slams continues, and what better way to start for him that the build-up to Roland Garros. He has proved to be not too bad at all on the dirt, winning the Madrid Masters and reaching a second straight Rome Masters final, just falling short to Nadal in the defence of his title. He made it to the second week of the French Open, but three straight five-set matches on one of the more gruelling surfaces took its toll.
Zverev’s Path to final (Seedings/Rankings)
R2: Felix Auger-Aliassime [WC]
R3: Fabio Fognini 
QF: Kei Nishikori 
SF: Rafael Nadal 
F: Novak Djokovic 
It is a challenging start to what has already looked like a disappointing start to his clay court season with a second round exit in Marrakech. Canadian fast-rising star Felix Auger-Aliassime has had some success on the dirt, and has a lot of confidence at the moment, and with solid clay courters dead ahead of him, Zverev will have his work cut out to get the European clay under his feet.
Thiem’s potential challenge will be to make some inroads into a 3-8 deficit against David Goffin, who is likely to be the first seed he comes across. Things do not get easier for the Austrian with negative head to heads against the rest of his likely field.
Thiem’s Path to final (Seedings/Rankings)
R2: Martin Klizan
R3: David Goffin
QF: Karen Khachanov 
SF: Novak Djokovic 
F: Rafael Nadal 
The Monte Carlo Rolex Masters take place between 14-21 April – (BST -1 hour).
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