BUMMER! Top Seed Gael Monfils Stunned by Qualifier Max Purcell at ATP Eastbourne 2021

Published 06/23/2021, 8:23 AM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – June 3, 2021 France’s Gael Monfils reacts during his second round match against Sweden’s Mikael Ymer REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier


Gael Monfils was up against Australian player Max Purcell in the second round match of the ATP Eastbourne Championships 2021. The Frenchman’s poor run of form this year continued after the roller-coaster match ended 4-6 7-5 4-6, in favor of Purcell.

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Set 1: Gael Monfils fails to come out on top

Gael Monfils didn’t get off to the best of starts. Right from the beginning, he was unable to serve according to his usual standards. On the other hand, Purcell was far more consistent than his opponent.

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The Frenchman barely got an opportunity to trouble the Australian player on his serve. On the contrary, Purcell had three opportunities and finally broke him on the third chance.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 8, 2021, France’s Gael Monfils after losing his first-round match against Finland’s Emil Ruusuvuori REUTERS/Jaimi Joy

In the end, the one break was enough for Max to clinch the set 6-4. During the set, Monfils won 28 points whereas his opponent won 33 points.

Set 2: Gael Monfils somehow finds a way

The second set was played in a similar fashion as the previous one. However, things took an interesting turn when the Australian player was serving for the match at 5-4. The Frenchman broke back to level things up at 5-5.

Riding on the momentum, Monfils consolidated the break and broke again to claim the set 7-5. The last 15 minutes were horrific for the Australian player and the match had to be decided by playing the third set.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 8, 2021, France’s Gael Monfils in action during his first round match against Finland’s Emil Ruusuvuori REUTERS/Jaimi Joy

Set 3: Max Purcell finds inspiration in the final minutes

In the final set, Monfils began serving and held serve after a close battle. Riding on the thrust, he broke Max in the next game and was sitting strong on a 2-0 lead.

Things took an interesting turn when Max found a route and broke the Frenchman twice in consecutive games. The score was 4-3 in the Australian’s favor. In the end, the Purcell served it out and sealed the set 6-4.

Watch this story: How Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams, And Other Tennis Stars’ Travel

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Purcell, a lucky loser, was 0-3 down in the 3rd after being 6-4, 5-3 up. https://t.co/ebELtUhhEG

— José Morgado (@josemorgado) June 23, 2021

This result comes as another setback for Gael as the Wimbledon Championships 2021 is soon to begin.

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Max Purcell will face the winner of the match between Andreas Seppi and Emil Ruusuvuori for a spot in the quarterfinals of the Eastbourne Championships 2021.

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Rohan Kollare

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Rohan Kollare is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. Rohan has a post-graduate diploma in Sports Management and a trophy cabinet adorned with accolades won in district and state-level tennis competitions. He has previously worked in Content Operations for Disney’s Hotstar for over a year, covering tennis and Formula One.

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