Stefanos Tsitsipas' title defence at the Monte Carlo Masters continued to gather pace when the Greek overcame Serbian Laslo Djere 7-5, 7-6(1) to reach the quarterfinals here on Thursday.Alexander Zverev too reach the quarterfinals after defeating 13th seed Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta 6-2, 7-5. The second seed will face fifth seed Andrey Rublev or ninth seed Jannik Sinner for a spot in the last four.The World No. 5 Tsitsipas did not drop a set en route to his first ATP Masters 1000 title at the clay-court event in 2021 and has been in ruthless form once again this week, backing up his opening win against 2019 champion Fabio Fognini with a consistent display against Djere.Tsitsipas served well and remained patient throughout, waiting for his chances before raising his intensity in the crucial moments as he caused the Serbian damage with his heavy forehand to triumph after one hour and 52 minutes.
The 23-year-old has captured seven tour-level titles in his career, but has not lifted a trophy since Lyon last May. Tsitsipas will continue his bid to change that when he faces 12th seed Diego Schwartzman in his 13th Masters 1000 quarterfinal.Already a champion in Madrid and Rome, Germany's Zverev is now three wins from adding a Monte Carlo trophy to his collection. "For the second clay-court match of the season, I can't complain too much," Zverev said in his on-court interview."Yes, I have lost focus a little bit in the second set, but at the end of the day, he's somebody that can really play. I'm happy with a two-set win."
Carreno Busta has proven a tough foe for Zverev in the past, particularly in the 2020 US Open semifinals, when the Spaniard won the first two sets before the German was able to rally. But on the red clay, the five-time Masters 1000 champion had too much firepower in a one-hour, 36-minute victory.Zverev struggled at times in his opening win against Federico Delbonis, but raised his level against Carreno Busta. The 24-year-old had the superior firepower, and was able to unleash powerful shots from neutral positions whereas his opponent struggled to put him on the back foot often.
"To win the biggest tournaments in the world, like Masters series, like Grand Slams, you have to be aggressive," Zverev said.