Monte Carlo, 11:30 – We haven’t seen the best tennis from Nadal this week although he could have been forgiven for thinking he didn’t need to play at a high level to beat Gabashvili and Seppi. Gabashvili really played well in their opening set and hung onto his early break for longer than expected.
Ferrer started his match with Dimitrov by being broken. After that we saw classic Ferrer and he breezed through in straight sets.
Ferrer has done well against Nadal in their more recent encounters and has actually won 2 of their last 3. They were on hard courts though. We have to go back to 2004 and their first meeting to find a Ferrer win on the dirt.
I think we have a decent chance of seeing 3 sets today but will be on Nadal for the win. Ferrer taking the first set would be great.
Monte Carlo, 13;30 – Tsonga beat Federer in straight sets at last year’s French Open. Fed was in the middle of a huge slump in form then and I am sure he hasn’t forgotten. He plays his best tennis when he has something to prove.
Fognini handed the match to Tsonga with a pathetic display that ended with him insulting his own father. He should have won the match in straight sets.
Tsonga has had 3 sets in both his matches whereas Federer has come through in straight sets both times. Federer started slowly against Rosol but was soon in control. He will be focused from the very first ball today.
Unless we see a poor match from Fed he should have too much court craft for Tsonga on these courts.