Gaël Monfils Makes Winning Return to Clay at Estoril Tournament

Aurélie Sacchelli, Media365, published on Wednesday April 3, 2024 at 9:12 p.m.

For his first match on clay since the last Roland-Garros, Gaël Monfils reached the first round of the Estoril tournament by beating the Portuguese Henrique Rocha in two sets.

The last time that Gaël Monfils played a match on clay was on May 30, at Roland-Garros against Sebastian Baez, and the Frenchman achieved the feat of winning in five sets after being 4 down. -0 40-30 in the last round. This Wednesday, the 45th in the world (who had withdrawn from his second round at Roland-Garros against Holger Rune) made his return to the surface, in a much less crazy atmosphere, in Estoril in Portugal. And he won 7-5, 7-5 in 1h41 against Henrique Rocha, 197th in the world (who will be 20 on Saturday) and invited by the organizers. Monfils experienced ups and downs during this meeting, but after three months spent on hard surface, he had to regain his automatisms, while the Portuguese had just won the Challenger on clay in Murcia ten days ago . In the first set, the games went by on both sides, until 3-2 where the Frenchman managed the first break, but while he was serving to win the set, he missed his throw and allowed his opponent to unbreak. Finally, at 6-5 in his favor, Monfils signed the break on his first opportunity to pocket the set.

Monfils saved two set points

In the second, it was Rocha who broke first, at 1-1, and who served for the set at 5-4. He got two set points, but Monfils put pressure on him on the return and saved them, before breaking on his third opportunity (5-5). And as in the first set, the Portuguese came under pressure at 5-6 and made two double faults, which allowed Monfils to win on his second match point. Thursday, “la Monfe” will face the 85th in the world Marton Fucsovics, whom he has already beaten three times out of three, for a place in the quarterfinals. Like Arthur Fils, Gaël Monfils hopes to climb the rankings to be seeded at Roland-Garros. This victory against Rocha allows him to gain five places to find himself 40th. A great performance for the man who was 324th a year ago and who will only have seven points to defend before the Parisian Grand Slam.

2024-04-03 19:12:00
#Estoril #Monfils #starts #season #gravel

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