Paris, Apr 17: Top-seeded Novak Djokovic was made to sweat for his 850th tour-level win by overcoming Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany in full sets in the second round of ATP Monte-Carlo Masters on Tuesday.
Facing the opponent that had beaten him at last month's BNP Paribas Open, the two-time former champion Djokovic triumphed at 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 in two hours and 36 minutes, setting up a third-round clash with Diego Schwartzman or Taylor Fritz. "I had ups and downs and in a way felt a bit rusty on the court. Hopefully I can play slightly better in the next round, because if I want to go deep in the tournament, I definitely have to up my game," the world No. 1 pointed out.
Losing the opening set 6-0 and going 5-4 down in the second, No. 11 seed Marco Cecchinato managed a comeback of 0-6, 7-5, 6-3 on 2014 champion Stan Wawrinka. "I was 0-6, 0-2 down and I thought maybe it's going to be 6-0, 6-0. I started the match so tense, and then I started to play way better because I started to play with my serve, with my forehand," Cecchinato pointed out.
Seventh-seeded Marin Cilic had to bid early farewell after losing the duel to Guido Pella of Argentina 6-3, 5-7, 6-1. The Croatian was joined by the eighth seed Karen Khachanov of Russia, who was defeated by Italian Lorenzo Sonego 7-6 (4), 6-4. The 11-time champion Rafael Nadal will kick off his campaign this year against Spanish countryman Roberto Bautista Agut on Wednesday. XINHUA