The tennis world turns its eyes to the picturesque Monte-Carlo Country Club as the top players gear up for the 3rd ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament. It is also the 1st of the 3 Masters in the clay season. This would be the 111th Edition of the Monte-Carlo Masters tournament since its inception in 1897. This tournament marks the return of World No. 1 & World No.2 Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic respectively. Both had been out due to their elbow injuries after Indian Wells.

The tournament will not feature World No. 4 Roger Federer as he decided to rest for the clay season after a successful return to the tour after a 6 month injury layoff. Instead, he will prepare for the Roland Garros and the Grass Court season later in the season. However, there are plenty of things to look forward to in this year’s Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. It would be interesting to see how both of them play after returning from injuries and the type of form both display.

Andy Murray didn’t have a great start to the year but would be one of the contenders here. He reached the semifinals here in 2016, losing to Rafael Nadal. He also reached the finals in Madrid & Roland Garros in 2016, losing to Novak Djokovic and beat him in the finals in Rome. Novak Djokovic is a 2-time winner here in Monte-Carlo. He also reached the finals in Rome in 2016 and won the Roland Garros and Madrid.

Rafael Nadal returns to his favourite surface and is surely one of the favourites. He had a great start to the 2017 season, reaching the finals of Australian Open and Miami Masters. Rafael Nadal is the defending Champion and also a 9 time record winner here in Monte-Carlo. Others in contention would be Stan Wawrinka, World No. 3 and 2014 Champion along with the likes of good clay court players such as Dominic Thiem and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. It would be also interesting to see the younger players such as Alexander Zverev, Grigor Dimitrov and Lucas Pouille.

As the tournament starts next week it would be interesting to see if we see a new winner. There have been only 3 winners in the past 12 Editions- Rafael Nadal (9), Novak Djokovic (2) and Stan Wawrinka (1). The tournament starts the road to Roland Garros and would be interesting to see who takes the edge at the start of the clay season.

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