First round gets going with fans filling the tribunes
It is early in the week but the tribunes are full and there has been lots of action in all the courts of the Monte-Carlo Country Club, with some triumphs and losses. Ernests Gulbis from Latvia who is 17th in the world and seeded 13th in the tournament, was defeated on the first round in 58 minutes by Austrian Andreas Haider-Maurer 61 60. The bad boy of tennis was unable to end his series of loses, so his new trainer Swedish Thomas Enqvist has a lot of work in front of him. Haider-Maurer is a bright star making his first Monte-Carlo appearance. The two other seeded players that were on the courts today passed to the second round: American giant John Isner (15th) won over countryman Steve Johnson 64 64, and Bautista Agut from Spain (12th) defeated German B. Becker 60 62. Ukranian Alexander Dolgopolov put a stop to the high hopes of young Croatian contender Borna Coric who fought hard but ending up losing in three sets 75 57 62. Temperamental Italian Fabio Fognini who is Italy’s No.1 took only 57 minutes to get rid of Polish Janowicz in two sets 63 61.
Results for Monday April 13
Singles First Round
-  R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d B. Becker (GER) 60 62
- Haider-Maurer (AUT) d  E. Gulbis (LAT) 61 60
-  J. Isner (USA) d S. Johnson (USA) 64 64
- [Q] A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) d [LL] R. Haase (NED) 61 61
- Goffin (BEL) d [Q] N. Gombos (SVK) 61 64
- [Q] B. Paire (FRA) d [Q] D. Kudla (USA) 63 76(3)
- Stakhovsky (UKR) d P. Carreno Busta (ESP) 76(3) 46 64
- Kohlschreiber (GER) d M. Kukushkin (KAZ) 64 64
- Sousa (POR) d [Q] E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) 61 36 60
- Dolgopolov (UKR) d B. Coric (CRO) 75 57 62
* [LL] R. Haase (NED) replaced [LL] D. Istomin (UZB) (thigh)
Doubles First Round
- Dimitrov (BUL) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) d M. Draganja (CRO) / H. Kontinen (FIN) 61 63
- [PR] P. Kohlschreiber (GER) / F. Mayer (GER) d B. Tomic (AUS) / V. Troicki (SRB) 76(7) 60
- [WC] R. Arneodo (MON) / B. Balleret (MON) d J. Chardy (FRA) / M. Cilic (CRO) 76(2) 57 10-6
The top guns were on the practice courts
Parallel to the official matches there were practice games with top players like Federer, Djokovic, Nadal, Tsonga, Wawrinka and more. I happened to meet David Ferrer coming out of one of the courts and he game me the most charming smile that I immortalised in a photo. And where there are tennis pros you find autograph hunters, like this adorable trio of young fans members of the Monte-Carlo Country Club that posed for my camera displaying their bounty.
The Terrace Restaurant – The place to be and be seen
Only a privileged few get a table at the Restaurant on the terrace of the club, the place to be and be seen, a place frequented by former players, celebrities and even Prince Albert and Princess Charlene. We have a table during the whole week as the icing on the cake to this wonderful tournament.
This Sunday our guests were Ronan Kervarrec, two-Michelin star Executive Chef of the famous restaurant La Chevre D’Or in Eze, France, and his adorable wife. Chef Alain Cavanna from the Group Monte-Carlo SBM came to greet his colleague and friend. Cavanna who orchestrates 70 cooks grouped by brigade over the Casino restaurants, Buddha Bar, and the Salle des Etoiles at the Sporting, installs his kitchen at the country club during the Tennis Masters to the delight of the guests.
My husband, Zsolt Lavotha, who loves to cook, enjoys spending time in Ronan’s kitchen learning the tricks of the trade.
Djokovic, Tsonga and Ferrer enter the arena today
French favorite Gael Monfils (14th) will open the program on central court against a qualifier from Russia Andrey Kuznetsov. He will be followed by Wilfried Tsonga (11th), who will face German J. Struff. World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will be next playing against a qualifier Ramos-Vinolas from Spain. Another Spanish David Ferrer (5th) will face V. Estrella Burgos from the Dominican Republic.
Stay tuned for updated news on the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters!