Djokovic Overcomes Musetti Challenge, Khachanov Stuns Medvedev at Monte Carlo Masters 2024

Novak Djokovic showcased his resilience against Lorenzo Musetti, securing a spot in the Monte Carlo Masters quarterfinals 2024.

Although he made a few careless mistakes and appeared lethargic at times, Novak Djokovic improved on crucial occasions to move on to the quarterfinals on Thursday.

Djokovic Overcomes Musetti Challenge, Khachanov Stuns Medvedev at Monte Carlo Masters 2024

Two-time Monte Carlo champion and top-ranked Serb Lorenzo Musetti had lost to him in the third round at the Country Club the previous year. This time, Musetti exacted revenge. Djokovic advanced with a confidence-boosting 7-5, 6-3 victory, having converted five of six break opportunities.

“He defeated me here last year. Comparable situations,” Djokovic, who is participating in his first competition since splitting from previous coach Goran Ivanisevic, remarked.

“I must admit that it was on the back of my mind when I was serving at 4-2, 40-15, because I was up a set and 4-2 when I lost the break. I was thinking, “Oh no, hopefully this is not a similar scenario like last year,” when I lost the break of serve. I’m overjoyed to have completed the task.”

Jannik Sinner, rated second, defeated Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 6-2 to advance to the quarterfinals as well.

Djokovic is 10-3 this year and hasn’t played much. His best performance was reaching the Australian Open semifinals. He is honing his preparations for the French Open in one month by using the clay-court competition in Monte Carlo.

Djokovic failed to hold his serve right away and found it difficult to adjust to Musetti’s range of strokes. The Italian was strong from the baseline, delivered some excellent drop shots, and put Djokovic on the defensive with his one-handed backhands.

When Djokovic broke in the eighth game after Musetti squandered a 40-0 lead, it was a turning point. After Musetti committed a double fault to lose the set, the Serb broke once again in the twelfth game.
In the second set, both players had trouble holding their serves, but Djokovic prevailed in the crucial points.

“This is clay, obviously things can turn around very quickly,” Djokovic stated. “On this surface, a break of serve is not as advantageous as it is on other surfaces. In the second set, we saw a brief glimpse of a roller coaster. I’m just relieved that it was beneficial to remain firm and assertive when necessary.”

at 2013 and 2015, Djokovic took home the trophy at Monte Carlo. Since his last triumph at the Country Club nine years ago, he has not gone past the quarterfinals.
Alex de Minaur, who defeated Alexei Popyrin 6-3, 6-4, will be his next opponent.

Earlier, Karen Khachanov defeated fellow Russian Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 7-5 to make it to the quarterfinals for the first time.

Sinner’s opponent this time around is Holger Rune, who won a three-and-a-half-hour match against Grigor Dimitrov 7-6 (9), 3-6, 7-6 (2) after saving two match points at 5-6 in the third set.
Rune had played his first match of the day, a rain-delayed victory over Sumit Nagal.
The next opponent Khachanov will face is Stefanos Tsitsipas, the two-time Monte Carlo champion who defeated Alexander Zverev 7-5, 7-6 (3).

Also Read: Jannik Sinner Clinch Miami Open 2024

Djokovic Overcomes Musetti Challenge, Khachanov Stuns Medvedev at Monte Carlo Masters 2024

Zverev won five straight games after Tsitsipas squandered a 5-0 lead in the second set and failed to convert two match opportunities. In the tiebreaker, though, the Greek regained his composure and improved his record against his German opponent to 10-5.

Despite winning his first clay-court competition in Rome last year, Medvedev still feels uneasy on the surface. Following his victory in Italy, he was defeated by a qualifier in the opening round of the French Open the previous year.

In the second set, Khachanov produced his first victory over a top-5 player of the season, hitting 11 winners and committing just three unforced errors.

“Being consistent should come first. I believe that lately, I’ve been getting better and better outcomes,” Khachanov stated. “After that, consider how to succeed and defeat the elite players. These are the things we need to continue to focus on and remember. The victory I had today gives me even more motivation to go forward with this competition and take the clay swing.”

He had only triumphed twice over Medvedev, the fourth-ranked player.

“On hard courts, I lost a few close matches to him,” Khachanov remarked. “I don’t yet have a title on clay, but I have decent results. Roland Garros quarterfinals twice. Consistently winning games yet falling short of the championship. I believe that overall, I perform better on clay than he does, and he has repeatedly stated that he dislikes playing on it.

When the second set was almost finished, Medvedev lost his cool and yelled at the chair umpire during the changeover. He was then given a point penalty. Khachanov had a 15-0 lead at the beginning of his final service game and won it.

Casper Ruud defeated Hubert Hurkacz 6-4, 6-2 to advance to the quarterfinals as well.

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