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  • Monte Carlo Masters: Novak Djokovic Reaches Record Th Masters Semifinal

Monte Carlo Masters: Novak Djokovic reaches record 77th masters semifinal

Novak Djokovic continued his record-breaking ways with a straight-set win over Alex De Minaur at the Monte Carlo Masters on Friday.

The world number one's 7-5 6-4 victory over the Australian earned him a spot in a 77th Masters 1000 semi-final, more than any other player, and was an encouraging result as Djokovic bids to return to form after his difficult start to the year.

The 36-year-old did appear to struggle physically in the second set and he said afterwards: "It was tough for both of us I guess. He's one of the quickest players on tour, he gets a lot of balls back that 99 per cent of the other players don't so he did surprise me with several passing shots.

"He said at the net that it was ugly. In the second set I think it was. We didn't play really at a high level, we made a lot of unforced errors. But a win is a win and I'm glad to go through."

Remarkably, it is the first time Djokovic has made it this far in Monaco since the second of his two titles in 2015.

"I'm very happy to be back in the semis," he said. "It's been a while. I love this tournament. I know this club very well, I've been training for so many years here.

"The last seven, eight years has been quite tough for me to win two or three matches consecutively, but here we are, another semis and I look forward to it."

Next he will face Casper Ruud in a rematch of last year's French Open final, with the Norwegian battling past France's Ugo Humbert 6-3 4-6 6-1.

Second seed Jannik Sinner survived his first real test of the week, making it 25 wins from 26 matches this season with a 6-4 6-7 (6) 6-3 victory over Holger Rune.

The Italian saw two match points slip away in the second set but recovered to book a last-four clash with Stefanos Tsitsipas, who is enjoying being back on clay and eased to a 6-4 6-2 win against Karen Khachanov.


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