Stefanos Tsitsipas has had a quiet start to the Rolex Monte Carlo Masters. The two-time winner of this tournament did not have to exert himself fully because his opponent, Laslo Djere withdrew in the second set, due to an injury to his right arm. At the time, he was leading 6-3, 3-2. The Greek will face a South American opponent on Wednesday: the Argentinian Etcheverry or the Chilean Jarry, who will play against each other on Tuesday.

Title favorite Carlos Alcaraz will face Felix Auger Aliassane at his start to the tournament, who had few problems in his duel with Italian qualifier Luca Nardi on Monday, who was defeated 6-2, 6-3 in 82 minutes. The Canadian resident of Monaco showed good form and was also very satisfied with his start to the tournament; “I was counting on a tough match, but it went very well because I was able to dominate the opponent with my game, while Nardi can be a difficult opponent on clay. I always like to play here because I really feel at home here. I train here a lot and know the conditions well.”

The Monegasques in the stands saw their compatriot Valentin Vacherot play surprisingly well against the ninth-seeded Bulgarian Gregor Dimitrov, who played the final of the tournament in Miami two weeks ago. The Monegasque held out for a long time in the first set and was only broken when a tie-break seemed imminent. In the second set, the Bulgarian was too strong for the 25-year-old, who is a half-brother of Benjamin Balleret, who played for Monaco at this tournament against Roger Federer in 2006. Dimitrov won 7-5, 6-2.

“It’s been a great experience and it’s just a shame that I didn’t manage to play the tie-break,” said the Monegasque Davis Cup player, who had the honour of playing on the center court. For Vacherot, the tournament is not over yet because he will play tomorrow in the doubles tournament together with his French cousin Rinderkench against the experienced Italian duo of Bolelli – Vavassori.

Dimitrov will play against the winner of Berrettini – Kecmanovic. The Italian, who played the Wimbledon final three years ago, seems to have recovered well from some injuries and won the Marrakech tournament last Sunday. He is an extra attraction for the many Italian fans that will come to Monte Carlo to see their new tennis star Jannik Sinner training on Tuesday. The Italian Lortenzo Musetti defeated American Taylor Fritz in straight sets (6-4, 6-4) and will play Frenchman Arthur Fils on Tuesday.

Novak Djokovic starts tomorrow’s tournament against Russian Safiullin, who was strong in two sets for Spanish qualifier Munar (7-5, 6-1). Defending champion Rublev starts the tournament on Wednesday against Australian Popyrin, who was too tight in three sets for French qualifier Moutet (3-6, 7-5, 6-2).

Featured image courtesy of REUTERS/Denis Balibouse: Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas in action during his round of 64 match against Serbia’s Laslo Djere