- ATP Tour
Djokovic races through Monte Carlo opener
Novak Djokovic raced through the first step of his Monte Carlo Masters title defence, beating Albert Montanes 6-1 6-0 in 45 minutes.
Djokovic, the world No. 2, extended his perfect head-to-head record against Spaniard Montanes to six matches, winning 11 games in succession to wrap up victory in his first clay court match of the season.
The second seed is bidding for a fifth straight Masters 1000 title on the back of victories in Shanghai and Paris at the end of the 2013 season and back-to-back titles on the hard courts of Indian Wells and Miami in March.
"For my first clay match since Roland Garros last June it was great," Djokovic said. "I could not find any flaws in my game. My opponent was making a lot of unforced errors, I tried not to give him any rhythm. I've had some short matches before, it's nice to get your work done so quickly."
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the No. 9 seed in Monte Carlo, maintained his record of winning his opening match at the tournament for a fifth time with a hard-fought 6-4 1-6 6-4 victory over Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber.
Frenchman Tsonga needed just under two hours to advance in front of enthusiastic home support, but needed a medical timeout on the way to securing victory on his third match point.
Compatriot Michael Llodra piled more misery on Polish 16th seed Jerzy Janowicz with a 6-4 6-2 win and Julian Benneteau saw off Austrian Jurgen Melzer 6-4 3-6 6-4, but Russian Teimuraz Gabashvili handed a 4-6 6-4 6-4 loss to Gilles Simon.
Fifth seed Tomas Berdych beat Dmitry Tursunov 7-5 6-4, with sixth seed David Ferrer breezing past Jeremy Chardy 6-3 6-0.
Grigor Dimitrov booked his spot in the second round with a 6-2 4-6 6-2 victory over Marcel Granollers, while Italian Andreas Seppi defeated 13th seed Mikhail Youzhny 6-3 7-6(4).