Day 5 Preview: Rublev Meets Sinner

As the field shrinks, the spotlight grows in Monte Carlo. Eight singles matches are on the docket Thursday at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, accounting for the entirety of the third round.

The first Top 10 matchup of the week will see Andrey Rublev and Jannik Sinner battle it out on Court Rainier III, while Americans Taylor Fritz and Sebastian Korda will open play on Court Des Princes before teaming up for doubles later in the day.

Prior to Rublev’s evening match against Sinner, Top 5 seeds Alexander Zverev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud feature on the show court.

View Schedule | View Singles Draw | View Doubles Draw

[5] Andrey Rublev vs. [9] Jannik Sinner (ITA)

After earning his first ATP Head2Head victory over Alex de Minaur in his Wednesday opener, Rublev now looks to beat Sinner in a completed match for the first time. The fifth seed moved past the Italian via an early retirement in Vienna in 2020 before Sinner scored a straight-sets victory in the Barcelona quarter-finals one year ago.

Sinner defeated Borna Coric and Emil Ruusuvuori to reach the Monte Carlo third round, his best performance in two Monaco appearances. The Italian is 18-3 on the season, reaching quarter-finals at the Australian Open, Dubai and Miami.

He’ll meet an opponent in equally stellar form, with Rublev posting a 19-4 mark on the season including titles in Marseille and Dubai. The 24-year-old also reached the Monte Carlo final in 2021, falling to Tsitsipas.

[2] Alexander Zverev vs. [13] Pablo Carreno Busta (ESP)

Opportunity knocks for Zverev in Monte Carlo, with the German able to move within touching distance of Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev for the top spot in the ATP Rankings with a title run. Zverev would complete the box set of clay-court ATP Masters 1000 trophies with four more wins on the week, having already won Madrid twice and Rome once.

“This is the only Masters on clay I haven’t won yet, but I’m very motivated to do so,” Zverev said after his Wednesday win over Federico Delbonis. “I’m very motivated to play great tennis and I hope I can show that on court this week.”

While the World No. 3 got through his first clay-court match of the season with a straight-sets decision over Delbonis, Carreno Busta needed three sets for opening victories against Sebastian Baez and Alexander Bublik. Kazakhstan’s Bublik, who beat wild card Stan Wawrinka in the first round, retired late in the third set against the Spaniard on Wednesday.

Carreno Busta has a 9-5 record in Monte Carlo, reaching the last 16 on three prior occasions but never getting beyond that stage. Zverev had an identical 9-5 record in Monaco but reached the semi-finals in 2018.

[10] Taylor Fritz (USA) vs. Sebastian Korda (USA)

This all-American matchup on Court Des Princes will yield a first-time Monte Carlo quarter-finalist, with Fritz holding a 4-2 record at the event and Korda making his debut. Both men earned their way into the last 16 with a pair of hard-fought victories each.

Korda scored one of the results of the week in a 7-6(2), 6-7(5), 6-3 win in windy conditions over Carlos Alcaraz as he backed up a first-round win over Botic van de Zandschulp.

“It was nice to get the victory today,” Korda said after beating the Spanish Miami Open champion. “I stayed calm and believed in my returning. It was super tough, every time he threw up the ball it moved around. It was a crazy match.”

Fritz, the Indian Wells titlist and American No. 1, battled through three-setters against Monte Carlo native Lucas Catarina and Marin Cilic to return to the third round for the first time since 2019.

Thursday’s meeting will be the first ATP Head2Head clash between the countrymen, who will team up to face Rohan Bopanna and Jamie Murray in the doubles second round later on Court 9.

Best Of The Rest

Fourth seed Ruud opens play on Court Rainier III against Grigor Dimitrov, followed by defending champion Tsitsipas taking on Laslo Djere.

On Court Des Princes, 13th seed Diego Schwartzman will take on Lorenzo Musetti following the all-American opener. The #NextGenATP Italian defeated Felix Auger-Aliassime on Wednesday to earn the second Top 10 win of his career; his first such win came against Schwartzman in Acapulco in 2021.

“Diego knows how to run and how to defend and attack, so it is going to be a really great battle,” Musetti previewed. “Diego was my first Top 10 win, so let’s see if I can double up the score. I hope to play a great match.”

Hubert Hurkacz will take on Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the third match on the Monte Carlo second stage, while doubles top seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury close play against Ariel Behar and Gonzalo Escobar.

The third-seeded doubles duo of Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos will also be in action on Court 2 against Daniel Evans and Schwartzman. That matchup follows Alejandro Davidovich Fokina vs. wild card David Goffin, with the Spaniard seeking to back up his second-round upset of Djokovic.


COURT RAINIER III start 11:00 a.m.
[4] C. Ruud (NOR) vs. G. Dimitrov (BUL)
[3] S. Tsitsipas (GRE) vs. L. Djere (SRB)
[2] A. Zverev vs. [13] P. Carreno Busta (ESP)
[5] A. Rublev vs. [9] J. Sinner (ITA)

COURT DES PRINCES start 11:00 a.m.
[10] T. Fritz (USA) vs. S. Korda (USA)
[12] D. Schwartzman vs. L. Musetti (ITA)
[11] H. Hurkacz (POL) vs. A. Ramos-Vinloas (ESP)
[1] R. Ram (USA) / J. Salisbury (GBR) vs. A. Nehar (URU) / G. Escobar (ECU)

COURT 2 start 12 noon
A. Davidovich Fokina vs. [WC] D. Goffin

Not Before 2:00 p.m. / After Suitable Rest
[3] M. Granollers (ESP) / H. Zeballos (ARG) vs. D. Evans (GBR) / D. Schwartzman (ARG)

COURT 9 start Not Before 1:00 p.m. / After Suitable Rest
R. Bopanna (IND) / J. Murray (GBR) vs. T. Fritz (USA) / S. Korda (USA)

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