• Raonic rolls in Monte-Carlo, Youzhny to face Djokovic

    4/15/13 6:27 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Raonic rolls in Monte-Carlo, Youzhny to face Djokovic Milos Raonic takes care of Julien Benneteau in straight sets on Monday in Monte-Carlo. Raonic is joined in the second round by Mikhail Youzhny, who eased past Daniel Gimeno-Traver.

    (12) Milos Raonic d. Julien Benneteau 6-1, 6-4

    Raonic's clay-court season got off to a strong start when he disposed of Benneteau in one hour and 12 minutes during first-round action at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters on Monday afternoon. The Canadian served at an awful 48 percent and he double-faulted five times, but he fired 15 aces and saved both of the break points he faced to hold all nine of his service games.

    Benneteau had lost his openers in both Indian Wells and Miami, and he could not get any momentum going in this one. The 27th-ranked Frenchman dropped serve twice in the first set before Raonic closed it out at 5-1 and one donation of serve in the second was one too many for Benneteau because he saw no more break chances after having two in the first. This week's No. 12 seed wrapped up the proceedings with a clinching hold at 5-4 to ensure a meeting with Jarkko Nieminen.

    Mikhail Youzhny d. Daniel Gimeno-Traver 6-4, 6-0

    Just as clay does not particularly favor Raonic against Benneteau, Youzhny would not have chosen this surface for a date with Gimeno-Traver. It hardly mattered, as the 26th-ranked Russian cruised in a mere one hour and eight minutes.

    Gimeno-Traver at least made a competitive affair out of the opening set, which was decided by nothing more than break-point conversions. The Spaniard stumbled on his two chances while Youzhny capitalized on one of three opportunities. Gimeno-Traver completely disappeared in the second, winning a shocking four total points. Youzhny advances to face world No. 1 Novak Djokovic on Wednesday.

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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
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