ATP Monte Carlo: Gael Monfils sends Jiri Vesely packing
Gael Monfils faced no problems as he sent Jiri Vesely packing to secure a quarterfinal berth in Monte Carlo. Photo credit: Manuel Blondeau/Getty Images.

Jiri Vesely caused the biggest upset of 2016 thus far when he surprised world number one Novak Djokovic in the second round of the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. It was the biggest win of the young Czech's career. Morevoer, it was Djokovic's first loss of the season and a suprising upset given the Serbian's dominance over the last year. 

Going up against world number 16 Gael Monfils of France, Vesely looked overwhelmed by the Frenchman's dynamic game, bowing out to his opponent under 70 minutes. Monfils is through to his second consecutive Monte Carlo quarterfinal. He has reached at least the quarterfinals or better at all but one of his tournaments in what has been a steady 2016 so far.

Monfils scores the breadstick in opening set

After trading breaks in the opening two games, Monfils settled into the match by holding his serve before breaking Vesely to love in the following game to go up 3-1. Monfils then saved five break points in the next game, converting his second game point to extend his lead to 4-1. Vesely could not hold his serve once again as Monfils took the following game on his third break point and successfully served out the opening set, sealing it six games to one with his first set point in 32 minutes.

Vesely offers late-match resistance

Vesely scored the biggest win of his career when he beat Novak Djokovic in the previous round. Photo credit: Michael Steele/Getty Images.
Vesely scored the biggest win of his career when he beat Novak Djokovic in the previous round. Photo credit: Michael Steele/Getty Images.

The start of the second set went pretty much the same way as the first did. After service holds by both players, Monfils struck first by breaking the Czech lefty twice and holding his service games to take a commanding 5-1 lead. Monfils had his first match point up 40-30 on the Vesely service game but could not convert it. 

This was followed by five deuces where Monfils had another three match points but failed to convert them all. Vesely finally held his serve on third game point, forcing last year's semifinalist Monfils to serve out the match. The Frenchman did so without any fuss, throwing an unreturned forehand cross court on his fifth match point to seal the victory 6-1, 6-2.

Up next

Monfils has reached the quarterfinals or better at all of his 2016 tournaments now except for Montpellier where he was dismissed in the first round. He faces one of 11th seed David Goffin or lucky loser Marcel Granollers in the quarterfinals. All three men will be looking for a good run on the red dirt of the Monacan city in the wide open quarter of the draw after the dismissal of dominant Djokovic and withdrawal of Spaniard David Ferrer pre-tournament due to injury.