TENNIS – A key event in the lead up to the French Open, the Monte Carlo Masters has seven Spanish players in the main draw.
Eleven-time Monte Carlo Masters champion, Rafael Nadal, is joined by six other Spanish players in the draw. Seeded #3, Nadal has a bye in the first round, as do all top eight seeds.
Defending champion, Italian Fabio Fognini is seeded 15th and does not have that luxury.
Carreno Busta on good form following Marbella win
Pablo Carreno Busta won his first ATP Tour title at home on Sunday, defeating fellow Spaniard Jaume Munar 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 to claim the AnyTech365 Andalucia Open trophy in Marbella.
This was Carreno Busta’s fifth ATP title and 200th tour win. “It’s a pleasure to win a title here in Spain, in Marbella. For me, it’s very special. It’s my fifth title, so I’m very, very happy for the victory,” he said after the match.
He faces Italian qualifier, Stefano Travaglia in the first round.
Toni Nadal coaching Canadian rising star
Uncle and ex-coach of Rafael, Toni Nadal joins Felix Auger-Aliassime’s team at the Monte Carlo Masters.
“I never considered before to work for someone else,” Nadal, 60, said. Nadal left his nephew’s team after helping him to his first 16 Grand Slam titles to work exclusively at the Rafael Nadal Academy in Majorca.
Auger-Aliassime is ranked 22nd in the world and will also keep his current coach Frederic Fontang.
However, Toni Nadal said he wouldn’t sit in either players’ box should they meet in the tournament.
“If [Rafa] has to lose to someone then I would rather him lose to Felix,” he said. “I’m still his uncle and have many years of involvement with him.”
With the players in different halves of the draw, they would not meet until the final.
Toni will not be travelling with Auger-Aliassime full-time. He is still the director of the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar. Rafa is entirely supportive of the new collaboration.
“I don’t have any problem. I always said the same: I want the best for Toni,” Nadal said. “He’s my uncle. I am very grateful for all the things that he did for me. I am happy that he’s on the Tour a couple of weeks.