Tennis News Wire -
Singles - First Round: (9) G Simon def. (W) B Balleret
The only real question about the outcome here was Gilles Simon's health -- you may recall that they were worried during Davis Cup. Obviously it wasn't a problem.
Singles - First Round: I Dodig def. I Ljubicic 6-0 6-3
It was a sad demonstration of the principle of "Last in, first out." Ivan Ljubicic was one of the lowest-ranked players with direct entry, and he became the first to lose. Badly, in an hour and 11 minutes. He won less than 40% of the points, and had only three aces. One could perhaps call it a passing of the torch, since Ivan Dodig is a fellow Croat -- but Dodig, although he didn't really emerge until about a year ago, has been around for a long time; he doesn't really represent a new generation.
In any case, it's not likely that Dodig will match Ljubicic's accomplishments. Ljubicic won ten career titles, on indoor and outdoor hardcourts, carpet, and grass, culminating in his 2010 title at Indian Wells. He had fourteen other finals, including three Masters. He made the Roland Garros semifinal in 2006. The ATP lists him with 429 career wins. He went as high as #3 in the world in 2006. He spent 11 consecutive years in the Top Fifty. And he was instrumental in guiding Croatia to the Davis Cup title in 2005, winning eleven singles matches.
Dodig gave him a nice tribute after the contest: "I think this is the first time that I'm not happy that I won the match. I'm happy and proud that I played the match against such a good player who made history, especially for Croatian people, Croatian tennis. "He had always great advice, suggestions. I think I used every word to become a better player and I have to thank him for this."
Singles - First Round: V Troicki def. J Lisnard (WC) 6-3 6-1
Not much to say about this except that Monte Carlo needs to either buy a higher class of players or stop giving the ones it has wildcards....