Novak Djokovic’s loss meant none of the Big 3 won a match at the 2022 Monte-Carlo Masters
Novak Djokovic’s return to action after a month-long break did not go according to plan, as the Serb fell to Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in three sets in his 2022 Monte-Carlo Masters opener.
The World No. 1 had his serve broken nine times by the Spaniard and made over 50 unforced errors in a rusty showing on center court. The defeat marked the 34-year-old’s first opening-round loss at a Masters 1000 event since the 2018 Miami Masters.
With both Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer sitting out the tournament – the former with a rib stress fracture and the latter due to knee rehab – it also marks the first instance where none of the Big 3 have won a match at a clay ATP 1000 event.
The last time it happened was in 2004. Back then, the Serb was yet to make his Masters 1000 debut — a feat he only achieved at the 2005 Cincinnati Masters. Although Nadal had played his maiden Monte-Carlo Masters the previous year (also his Masters debut), he sat out all three clay Masters 1000 events in 2004 with an ankle injury.
Federer, on the other hand, was a seasoned pro at that point, having already won his first Masters 1000 title (2002 Hamburg Masters). He ended up winning the 2004 Hamburg Masters (now replaced by the Madrid Masters) and lost out in the second round of the Rome Masters.
But before that, he decided to skip the trip to Monte-Carlo, making it the last ATP 1000 clay tournament before the most recent edition of the same where no member of the Big 3 scored a win.
Since then, the Spaniard has appeared every single year in Monte-Carlo as well as Rome. His worst result at the former has been a quarter-final exit, whereas he has lost his opener in the latter only once — the 2008 edition that was incidentally won by Djokovic.
The 21-time Grand Slam champion has not competed in Madrid only twice – 2005 and 2006 – and has reached at least the third round whenever he has shown up. Federer won the 2005 edition, and although the Swiss sat out the next year with an injury, Novak Djokovic made the draw as a qualifier and reached the second round.
Novak Djokovic returns back home for the Serbia Open following his Monte-Carlo loss
Novak Djokovic will be seen in action next at the Serbia Open
The trip to Monte-Carlo wasn’t a total loss for Novak Djokovic, as he ended up getting some vital match practice under his belt in preparation for his ultimate goal — the French Open.
Following his nearly three-hour long encounter, the Serb will return home to Belgrade where he will participate in the Serbia Open. The World No. 1 is a two-time winner at the event and will be headlining a significantly weaker field compared to what he had to endure this week.
With most of the big names opting to play in the ATP 500 Barcelona Open at the same time, the 20-time Grand Slam champion has a very good chance of getting his rhythm back with more time on the court.
Also Check Out :-Monte Carlo Masters 2022 Schedule