Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 15th 2015 Contents formance for my first match on
clay against an experienced player
on this surface," Djokovic said.
"There was a good intensity."
Djokovic, who is up against
Andreas Haider-Maurer in the next
round, showed no problem adjust-
ing to the dust and raced to a 4--0
lead in the opening set, perfectly
reading Ramos-Vinolas serve to
break him twice.
A double-fault and two consec-
utive backhand mistakes in the
next game, however, gave some
hope to his opponent, who could
not build on the momentum and
dropped his serve immediately
after he broke.
After a shoulder injury sidelined
him for three months and a loss
on his return at Indian Wells in
March, reigning US Open cham-
pion Marin Cilic won his first
match this year with a 6--3, 3--6,
6--3 defeat of Florian Mayer. Fifth-
seeded David Ferrer joined Djokovic
in the third round when Victor
Estrella Burgos retired while trailing
Ninth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov
came out on top of a tight first-
round match with Fernando Ver-
dasco 6--4, 4--6, 6--4.
Also, Gael Monfils overcame a
shaky start to rally past Russian
qualifier Andrey Kuznetsov 4--6,
6--3, 6--4, while tenth-seeded
Gilles Simon and Jo-Wilfried
Tsonga also advanced in straight
The 14th-seeded Monfils, who
recently returned to the tour after
a knee injury, struggled with his
serve early before finding his range.
Monfils display on the Country
Club s center court was not as
flashy as his green-and-yellow
outfit. But despite the numerous
unforced errors and the erratic ten-
nis, the Frenchman was satisfied.
"I often struggled at this tour-
nament. It s always a difficult peri-
od of the year for me, and I m real-
ly happy I got through this one,"
Monfils said. "I ve lost similar
matches here before."
Wild-card entry Lucas Pouille
also advanced and will next face
Nadal, while Juan Monaco will be
up against Stan Wawrinka after
defeating Jiri Vesely 6--4, 6--2. (AP)
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Wednesday, April 15, 2015
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Friday 8th May, 2015
PARIS---Prize money at the French
Open will rise to 28 million euros
($29.5 million) this year, an increase
of 3 million euros from last year.
The men s and women s champions
will receive 1.8 million euros ($1.9 mil-
lion) each, 150,000 euros more than
2014, and losing finalists will receive
900,000 euros, a raise of 75,000 euros.
Tournament director and French
Tennis Federation general director
Gilbert Ysern says "this notable increase
in Roland Garros prize money is part
of the four-year plan that was put in
place for 2013 until 2016."
There are also notable increases for
players losing during the first week of
The French Open begins on May 24.
French Open prize money
goes up to 28m euros
MONACO---Even when it comes to
foreign languages skills, Novak
Djokovic wants to be the best.
After strolling into the third round
of the Monte Carlo Masters with a 6--1,
6--4 win over qualifier Albert Ramos-
Vinolas, the top-ranked Serb told spec-
tators in fluent French how pleased he
was with his first win on clay this sea-
Djokovic s next big goal is to win the
French Open, the only Grand Slam
tournament missing from his already
Mastering another foreign language
is on his list, too.
"French is a very global language, I
wanted to know it," Djokovic said Tues-
day --- in English --- during his post-
match news conference. "Again, I am
still not content with where my level
of knowledge of French is, but it s get-
ting there, even though I don t get the
Djokovic s desire to excel in French
speaks volumes about his devouring
ambition. At 27, the eight-time major
champion already has 51 titles to his
name and has been at the top of the
rankings for 142 weeks, one more than
According to his friend Janko Tip-
sarevic, Djokovic s appetite for victory
"If you ask me personally, his goal,
even though it seems far from now, is
to pass (Roger) Federer," Tipsarevic told
the ATP Web site. "I think that his goal
is to be the best player of all time."
Djokovic is first attempting to
dethrone Nadal, the "King of Clay."
The Serb is off to his best start since
2011 and hopes he can carry his hard-
court form into the clay season, which
will climax at Roland Garros, where
Nadal has won a record nine times. But
the Spaniard s current struggles might
help Djokovic take him off his perch.
The French Open starts on May 24.
In Monte Carlo, Nadal and Djokovic
have been placed in the same half of
the draw and could meet in the semi-
finals. Djokovic, however, is not in a
hurry to find him on his path.
"He s somebody that has made his-
tory in this sport," Djokovic said. "He s
probably, looking at the amount of
matches that we played against each
other, my biggest rival. He s an ultimate
challenger on clay courts. This is where
we are right now."
In a match that sometimes resembled
a practice session, Djokovic never looked
troubled by Ramos-Vinolas, although
he dropped his serve once in the middle
of the opening set.
The win over the Spanish clay-court
specialist extended Djokovic s winning
streak to 13 matches following back-
to-back titles at Indian Wells and
"I m really pleased with my per-
Djokovic eases into 3rd round at Monte Carlo
BRINDISI---Venus Williams has with-
drawn from the United States team
for this weekend s Fed Cup playoff in
Italy because of a personal matter.
US captain Mary Joe Fernandez said
that Williams is not injured and that
her withdrawal is not related to any
medical condition but rather "some-
thing came up."
Williams will be replaced by 57th-
ranked Lauren Davis.
The American team is led by top-
ranked Serena Williams and also
includes No 45 Alison Riske and No 65
The Italian team includes No 15 Sara
Errani, No 26 Flavia Pennetta, No 36
Camila Giorgi and No 55 Karin Knapp.
The Italians are without Roberta
Vinci, who has an inflamed right elbow.
The best-of-five series will be played
outdoors on red clay at the Circolo
Venus Williams to miss
Fed Cup playoff in Italy
Novak Djokovic of Serbia plays a return to Albert Ramos Vinolas of Spain
during their match of the Monte Carlo Tennis Masters tournament in
Monaco, yesterday. Djokovic won 6--1, 6--4. AP PHOTO
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