tennis olympic champion Alexander Zverev achieved certain success at the beginning of the preparation for the French Open. In Monte Carlo, his adopted homeland, the 26-year-old Hamburger reached the round of 16 with a 6:3, 6:4 victory against Austrian Sebastian Ofner. After 1:18 hours, Zverev secured victory in his first clay court match this year.

For fifth place in the world rankings, it was the fourth success in the fourth meeting with Ofner. Zverev suffered his only loss of serve when he served to win the match when the score was 5:2 in the second set and allowed Ofner to get close again.

In the round of eight of the Masters 1000 tournament, Zverev will face either Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas or Argentine Tomas Martin Etcheverry, who will meet on Wednesday.

Jan-Lennard Struff also reached the round of 16. The Sauerlander initially lost a 4-1 lead against the Croatian Borna Coric, but then won 7:6 (7:2), 6:1. Jannik Sinner, second in the world rankings, would now wait for Struff if the Italian beats the American professional Sebastian Korda. At the beginning of the tournament, Struff continued fighting in three sets against the Argentine Sebastián Báez.

Alcaraz has to cancel

In the first round, Zverev was like the top favorite Novak Djokovic a goodbye. World number one Djokovic made an impressive comeback after his short break and giving up the Miami Masters and gave Russian Roman Safiullin no chance 6:1, 6:2. The last time Djokovic failed surprisingly was in the third round, in Indian Wells, in mid-March.

The record Grand Slam tournament winner then decided not to participate in Miami, claiming that at that point in his career he was balancing his professional and private schedule.

The start of the clay court season has been delayed for Spanish tennis player Carlos Alcaraz. The 20-year-old had to cancel his trip to Monte Carlo at short notice, as he wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “I tried until the last minute to recover from an injury to my right arm, but it was not possible,” wrote Alcaraz, who would have played against Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime after a break in the first game.

At the end of May, the French Open begins in Paris, the sporting highlight of the clay court season and the second Grand Slam tournament of the year.

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