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Djokovic, Nadal advance, Zverev, Thiem out of Monte Carlo Masters


Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal advanced to the quarterfinals of the on-going Monte Carlo Masters with straight set victories, but third-seeded Alexander Zverev and fourth-seeded Domini Thiem suffered upsets.

Nadal defeated Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 6/4, 6/1 for the 12th time in their careers. Their first face off was a titanic battle in 2009 Rotterdam championships and Nadal prevailed 7/5, 3/6, 6/2. Dimitrov defeated Nadal in 2001 Beijing China.Djokovic defeated American Taylor Fritz, 6/3, 6/0 in their first ever meeting on the tour. However, it was a reverse of fortunes for Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic, who won 6/3, 6/3 for the first time in six career meetings with Austria’s Dominic Thiem.

The match of the day was Fabio Fognini’s 7/6 (6), 6/1 victory over the third seed Alexander Zverev of Germany. After winning the first set, Fognini took first game of the second set on his serve and broke Zverev to lead 2-0. Despite a stiff resistance by Zverev, Fognini held his serve to extend the lead to 3-0.

In the fourth game, Zverev was down 15-50 but delivered two aces and earned a service winner for 40-15. At game point, Fognini hit a forehand over the baseline. Fognini opened the fifth game with a deft drop shot and sped to 40-30 but was taken to deuce before holding serve for 4-1. Zverev threw his racket to the ground in frustration. Zverev lost his serve to hand the sixth game to his opponent for a 5-1 lead.

Serving for the match, Fognini raced to 40-15 and clinched the game when Zverev could not control a vicious forehand hit deep into his right hand corner. The upset was achieved in one hour and 31 minutes.In other matches, Borna Coric of Bulgaria defeated Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert 6/4, 6/2 for the second time in his career and Daniil Medvedev of Russia defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, 6/2, 1/, 6/4.

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