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Nadal takes Monte Carlo by storm as Frenchman prepares for battle

| 14.04.2011

You knew Rafael Nadal was going to enjoy his opening match of the clay court season and Jarkko Nieminen was blown away by the world number one.

A rejuvenated Richard Gasquet is up next for Nadal and while Gasquest pedigree is solid, the Frenchman is as big as 10/1 to beat Nadal with the Spaniard trading at 1/50.

Nadal has never lost to Gasquet in their seven meetings but of the three on clay, two of those went the distance.

Gasquet reached three finals in last year’s clay court season and his clay game is solid.

Nadal will go through but he may have to battle a little harder than he did against Nieminen and backing Nadal to beat Gasquet 2-1 at 6/1 seems the pick of the betting.

Roger Federer vs Marin Cilic

As the second seed Roger Federer’s route to the final should be relatively simple and while Marin Cilic has to be respected, Federer’s Monte Carlo Masters odds of 1/8 to win shouldn’t be opposed.

Cilic is a solid clay player while this is easily Federer’s least favoured surface, but favoured or not, Federer is still one of the better players on clay and while Cilic’s odds of 9/2 just aren’t tempting enough.

The two players have met once before back in 2008 and while that match was played on carpet, Federer dominated winning in straight sets 6-3, 6-4.

Federer is 2/5 to win 2-0 and it’s difficult to see this match ending in any other outcome.

Tommy Robredo vs Viktor Troicki

Troicki and Robredo share one win apiece on clay and while Troicki’s was in last year’s French Open, Robredo’s was in this tournament and it’s the shorter format of the game that can see Robredo through.

The Spaniard is 8/15 to beat the Serb and after yesterday’s victory over Verdasco, Robredo is in confident spirits.

A £10 stake on Robredo beating Troicki 2-0 would return £23.75. New customers sign up here to take advantage of a free tennis bet worth up to £30.

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Author

Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.