Monte-Carlo Masters tennis preview, predictions and best bets: Djokovic returns in style

Novak Djokovic celebrates at the 2019 U.S. Open.
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Ricky Dimon


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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports -- just about any and all you can think of! -- and coaching tennis in Atlanta, GA. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me. For Ricky Dimon media enquiries, please email
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The clay-court swing picks up steam on its buildup to the French Open when the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters takes center stage this coming week. It’ a 1000-point tournament on the men’s side (the second-highest level behind only the Grand Slams, which award 2000 ranking points to the champion). As such, most of the top players in the world – at least the ones who are healthy – are participating.

Rafael Nadal is sidelined for a few more weeks because of a rib injury, Daniil Medvedev is out with a hernia and Roger Federer is still on the shelf. However, Novak Djokovic is making his return after missing Indian Wells and Miami. The world No. 1 is joined in a strong Monte-Carlo field by Alexander Zverev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Casper Ruud, Andrey Rublev, Felix Auger-Aliassime, and Carlos Alcaraz.

Let’s take look at the odds to win the Monte-Carlo title and discuss the best bets to be made. It should be noted that the WTA Tour does not play this event, so there are no betting opportunities on the women’s side.

Monte-Carlo Masters odds

Here are the odds for the Miami Open men’s singles tournament, courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Novak Djokovic +220
Carlos Alcaraz +350
Stefanos Tsitsipas +600
Alexander Zverev +750
Andrey Rublev +1100
Casper Ruud +1200
Jannik Sinner +2500
Felix Auger-Aliassime +2800
Hubert Hurkacz +3500
Taylor Fritz +4500
Pablo Carreno Busta +4500

3-star value play: Novak Djokovic (+220)

On the downside, Djokovic has played only one tournament this season (and failed to win it) because of his unvaccinated status. The good news is that the result is previously unheard of +220 odds. In recent seasons you could not even get Djokovic at +220 to win a Grand Slam. At this price in a tournament in which the other members of the Big 3 are absent (as mentioned earlier, Nadal and Federer are out), I simply cannot pass up the opportunity. The world No. 1 should be able to play himself into form with a relatively easy first match and that will prepare him for tougher tests later in the week.

2-star value play: Stefanos Tsitsipas (+600)

With Djokovic and Alcaraz both in the top quarter of the draw, the door is open elsewhere – especially in the bottom half. That is where the second-seeded Tsitsipas finds himself. Not only is the Greek the defending champion of this event, but he also finished runner-up to Djokovic at last year’s French Open. Tsitsipas simply loves playing on clay. It would be no surprise if he goes back-to-back in Monte-Carlo.

1-star value play: Jannik Sinner (+2500)

Sinner also finds himself in the weaker bottom half of the bracket, so his value at +2500 is outstanding. I expect him to face Tsitsipas in the semifinals after emerging from a section in which the highest-seeded players are Zverev and Rublev. Neither one is in great form at the moment. Sinner, by contrast, is on fire. He is 16-3 this season with quarterfinal finishes at the Australian Open and in Miami. As for his clay-court prowess, the Italian reach the French Open quarters as a 19-year-old.

The Pickswise tennis handicappers are on hand throughout the entire tennis season, bringing you the best free expert Tennis predictions and picks from top events including the U.S. Open, French Open, Wimbledon and the Australian Open.

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