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Masters Series Monte-Carlo presented by Rolex from 19th to 27th April 2008 - “Guga”, guest of honour! First wild card awarded to Gustavo Kuerten

19/03/2008 -

At the press conference given in the Pavillon Elysée in Paris today, Zeljko Franulovic, the Director of the Tournament and former Monte Carlo champion, revealed the main features of the next Masters Series Monte Carlo presented by Rolex, which is to be held from 19th to 27th April 2008 in the prestigious setting of the Monte Carlo Country Club, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary this year.

The first tournament of the season on a clay court, the Masters Series Monte Carlo presented by Rolex, organised by SMETT (Monegasque Company for the Administration of the Tennis Tournament), will see 56 of the best ATP circuit players competing in the final draw.

Masters Series status to remain
Zeljko Franulovic was keen to point out first of all that the Monegasque event was to keep its Masters Series status and its position among the top tournaments in the world. “Within the scope of the restructuring of the 2009 ATP circuit planning to downgrade our tournament, which benefited throughout 2007 from the support, unsolicited and unique within the world of tennis, of the best players in the world, in particular that of Roger Federer (nr. 1), Rafael Nadal (nr. 2) and Novak Djokovic (nr. 3), I am pleased to confirm that the Monte Carlo Tournament is to maintain its position among the elite of the ATP circuit and keep its Masters Series status in 2009 and the years to follow!" ».

Gustavo Kuerten’s comeback to Monaco
While three wild cards for Monte Carlo will be presented after the Davis Cup at the beginning of April, Zeljko Franuolovic has also announced that the Tournament’s Organising Committee would like to pay tribute to the former world champion, Gustavo Kuerten, who announced his withdrawal from competition, by offering him the first invitation. For the French public, the name “Guga” (his nickname) is closely connected with the history of Roland Garros (champion in 1997, 2000 and 2001) but also with Monte Carlo which the Brazilian won twice in 1999 and 2001. Monaco represents the first phase of the European farewell tour of the player that has always enjoyed a privileged relationship with the public.

The elite of World Tennis expected in the Principality
In 2007, the world’s two top players in the ATP ranking competed in the final. It was the talented Spaniard Rafael Nadal who won the day for the third year running. The 2008 line-up of the Masters Series Monte Carlo presented by ROLEX promises to be as exceptional as that of the last three years, in which almost all the world's top players – except for the Americans - had agreed to take part. Except for injury or any other unforeseeable event, the organisers are expecting the indisputable 2 top world players, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, to be taking part, as well as the Serb Novak Djokovic (nr. 3), the Spaniard David Ferrer (nr. 4), the Russian Nikolay Davydenko (nr. 5) and the Argentinean David Nalbandian (nr. 7)... The crème de la crème of European, Spanish and South American players are also expected, as is the rising generation in French tennis headed by number 1 Richard Gasquet, Gaël Monfils and of course Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the discovery of the recent Australian Open.

The 2008 Programme (subject to modification)

Saturday 19th April
From 11 a.m. : 1st Qualifying round for the final draw
12h00 : Official selection of the Final Draw in the V.I.P. village
Sunday 20th April
From 11 a.m. : 2nd Qualifying round for the final draw
Beginning of the 1st Singles and Doubles Round
Children’s Day (autographs, tennis workshops, etc…).

Monday 21st April
From 11 a.m. : 1st Singles and Doubles Round
Meeting of the Cote d’Azur Tennis League instructors

Tuesday 22nd April
From 10 a.m. : 1st Singles and Doubles Round

Wednesday 23rd April
From 10 a.m. : 2nd Singles and Doubles Round

Thursday 24th April
From 10 a.m. : Singles and Doubles 1/8 finals
Women’s Day (forecast competition, autographs etc…)

Friday 25th April
From 10.30 a.m. : Singles and Doubles 1/4 finals
Italian Day (new in celebration of Italian Liberation Day).
at 8.30 p.m. : Grand Tennis Evening (on invitation)
Salle des Etoiles at the Sporting Monte Carlo, in the presence of players from the tournament and various guests
( NB: Reservations from the Press Desk, limited numbers)

Saturday 26th April
From 11 a.m. : Singles and Doubles 1/2 finals
Congress of sports medicine

Sunday 27th April
at 10 a.m. : Congress of the Presidents of the Cote d'Azur League Tennis clubs at the Monte Carlo Bay
at midday : Press Conference with Z. Franulovic (Tournament overview)
at 2.45 p.m. : Presentation of the finalists
at 3 p.m. : Singles Final (in 3 sets)
Followed by the Doubles Final

 Société Monégasque pour l’Exploitation du Tournoi de Tennis
Le Puccini, 48, boulevard d'Italie 212 - MC 98004 – Monaco Cedex
Press Contact: Email: prialland@smett.mc
Accreditation: Elisabeth Napierala - E-mail: info@smett.mc
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Last updated: April 4, 2008 (09:46) Copyright © 2014 Service Informatique du Ministère d'Etat www.gouv.mc