Monte Carlo Masters: Novak Djokovic soon at home with new surface

Djokovic is a resident of the Monaco principality

Paul Newman
Tuesday 14 April 2015 22:58 BST
The world No 1 Novak Djokovic
The world No 1 Novak Djokovic (Getty Images)

Novak Djokovic lives within walking distance of the Monte Carlo Country Club, but the world No 1 admitted here yesterday that it had been a long time since he had played on the clay courts staging this week’s Masters Series tournament.

“Considering the number of months that I haven’t played on clay, I thought it was a very good performance to win in two sets against a clay-court specialist,” Djokovic said after his opening 6-1, 6-4 victory over Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas. “Maybe at the beginning of the second set there were a few games where my intensity and concentration did drop a little bit, but overall it was a high-quality performance.”

Djokovic will next meet Andreas Haider-Maurer, who is playing here for the first time. The 28-year-old Austrian, who has climbed to No 52 in the world rankings, reached the third round by beating Australia’s Bernard Tomic 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 after a gruelling battle that lasted nearly three hours.

The French Open, which starts on 24 May, has announced a 12 per cent increase in prize-money. Losers in the second and third rounds will be paid around 20 per cent more than last year.

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