• Ferrer kicks off 2010 Monte-Carlo bid on Monday

    4/12/10 4:35 AM | Kelli DeMario
    Ferrer kicks off 2010 Monte-Carlo bid on Monday David Ferrer squares off against qualifier Peter Luczak in the first round of play at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. They are joined in action by Santiago title-winner Thomaz Bellucci, who faces Philipp Kohlschreiber.

    (11) David Ferrer vs. (Q) Peter Luczak

    Eleventh seed David Ferrer takes on first-time opponent Peter Luczak Monday afternoon. The 28-year-old Spaniard enters his seventh Monte-Carlo Masters with a 17-6 record this season. Ferrer has excelled on clay in 2010, having pocketed the title in Acapulco (def. Ferrero) and a runner-up finish in Buenos Aires (lost to Ferrero). The Valencia native is a four-time quarterfinalist in Monaco. Ferrer booked a spot in the round of 16 last year, before falling to compatriot Fernando Verdasco.

    Australian Peter Luczak, successfully qualifying for this week’s event, returns to clay-court play after a first-round loss to Potito Starace in Morocco. The 30-year-old has enjoyed mixed results on clay, advancing to the Santiago quarterfinal, then following with opening-round defeats in Costa Do Sauipe, Buenos Aires and Acapulco. Luczak makes his first Monte-Carlo main-draw appearance since 2003 (lost to Srichaphan).

    Prediction: Ferrer in straight sets.

    Thomaz Bellucci vs. Philipp Kohlschreiber

    Thomaz Bellucci will be looking to level the head-to-head series with Philipp Kohlschreiber on Monday. The Brazilian trails the German 0-1, having lost the pair’s only meeting at this year’s hard-court event in Auckland, 4-6, 1-6.

    Bellucci begins his 2010 Monte-Carlo run ranked World No. 31. The 22-year-old has a clay-court title in hand this season, as he took home top honors in Santiago (def. Monaco). The Sao Paulo resident is 14-7 heading into his first Monte-Carlo main draw.

    The 33rd-ranked Kohlschreiber, contesting his fourth Monte-Carlo tournament, is set to make his 2010 clay-court debut. The 26-year-old holds a 9-7 mark this year, helped by a semifinal run in Auckland. The German made his first trip to Monte-Carlo as a qualifier in 2007, where he finished among the final eight (lost to Nadal).

    Prediction: Bellucci in three sets.

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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
5. Nadal 6 385 pts

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