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Monte Carlo Masters 2024

Top five upsets at Monte Carlo Masters 2024

Published at :April 17, 2024 at 3:33 PM
Modified at :April 17, 2024 at 3:33 PM
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(Courtesy : Hindustan Times)

Mohammed Fazeel

Sumit Nagal created history at Monte Carlo Masters.

Monte Carlo Masters 2024 was in for a few unpleasant surprises. Rafael Nadal – the 11-time champion in the Principality, withdrew from the tournament even before it began. Carlos Alcaraz and Felix Auger-Aliassime joined Nadal in announcing their withdrawal, with discomfort in the right arm for Alcaraz and pain in the right knee for Aliassime from the ATP Masters event.

The week-long tournament saw its share of inevitable upsets and unexpected results as the clay court season got underway with the Monte Carlo Masters.

Biggest upsets at Monte Carlo Masters 2024

Sumit Nagal defeats Matteo Arnaldi

In the opening weekend of the Monte Carlo Masters, Sumit Nagal became the first man from India to make the main draw since 1982. By toppling World No. 38 Matteo Arnaldi in the first round, the 26-year-old Nagal became the first player from his country to post a main-draw win at the prestigious ATP 1000 event in the Open Era.

Nagal’s win over Arnaldi 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 is his second top 50 win of the 2024 season. The Indian got the better of World No. 27, Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik, in the first round of the Australian Open. Thanks to his second-round appearance in Monaco, he has climbed to a career-high of World No. 80 on the ATP Rankings. He went on to play Holger Rune in the second round, taking a set off the Dane.

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Casper Ruud defeats Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic was cruising along nicely despite his hiccups in the early rounds at the 2024 Monte Carlo Masters. The Serb was all set to make his first final at the event since 2015 when meeting Casper Ruud in the semis – a player against whom he maintains a five-win streak with no losses.

But Ruud had other plans for the World No. 1. Casper Ruud notched up a stunning victory against top seed Novak Djokovic 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 on the clay courts of Monaco. The Norwegian not only earned his first win against the World No. 1 – but it was also the first time he took a set off the 24-time Grand Slam champion.

Stefanos Tsitsipas defeats Jannik Sinner

Tsitsipas got the better of Jannik Sinner in his semi-final match against the Italian, who had won the last ATP 1000 Masters tournament at Miami in the previous week. The result was a convincing 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 victory against World No. 2 and second seed Sinner. The Italian has been near-invincible this season with just one loss against 25 wins before walking onto the court for his last four fixture against the Greek.

Tsitsipas rallied to defeat Sinner 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, and make his third final in four years. He went on to take home a third Monte Carlo Masters trophy following wins in 2021 and 2022. The Greek re-entered the top ten in the ATP rankings following his title run at Monaco – climbing five places to World No. 7.

Karen Khachanov defeats Daniil Medvedev

Khachanov, by defeating Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 7-5 in their round of 16 match, has handed the World No. 4 his earliest exit of the season. Medvedev had reached at least the semi-final stage in his four previous tournaments. A semi-finalist here in 2019, Medvedev was a shadow of his former self this season, losing all five finals since winning the Rome Masters in 2023.

Karen Khachanov took out compatriot Daniil Medvedev for only the second time in their career meetings and for the first time since 2018. Khachanov, who has earned his first top-five win of the season with a win over Medvedev, advanced to his eighth ATP Masters 1000 quarterfinal. He lost to eventual winner Stefanos Tsitsipas in straight sets in the last eight.

Alexei Popyrin defeats Andrey Rublev

Alexei Popyrin handed defending champion Andrey Rublev a second-round defeat at Monte Carlo, evening out their head-to-head at 1-1. It was also his sixth win over a top-ten player. The unseeded Popyrin, ranked No. 44, bundled out sixth seed Rublev in straight sets 6-4, 6-4 in one hour and 40 minutes.

Popyrin’s Monte Carlo run ended in the third round against fellow Aussie Alex de Minaur. However, Popyrin has moved up two spots in the PIF ATP Rankings thanks to his win over Andrey Rublev.

Rublev had picked up his maiden ATP Masters 1000 crown in Monte-Carlo last season, beating Holger Rune in the summit clash. Since making a semifinal appearance at the ATP 500 event in Dubai, the Russian has yet to make it past the second round in subsequent tournaments.

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