Ferrer ousts Nadal; Federer into Monte Carlo semis
Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France (SportsNetwork.com) - David Ferrer stunned eight-time champion Rafael Nadal, while three-time runner-up Roger Federer avoided a quarterfinal upset Friday at the $4 million Monte Carlo Masters tennis event.
The sixth-seeded 2011 Monte Carlo runner-up to Nadal, Ferrer, upset the world No. 1 Nadal 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 on the red clay at Monte Carlo Country Club, where Nadal had won a record eighth straight titles before losing to Novak Djokovic in last year's blockbuster finale. This marks Nadal's earliest exit here in 11 years.
Nadal piled up 44 unforced errors and was broken four times, while Ferrer lost his own serve three times in the 2-hour, 13-minute affair on Day 6.
Ferrer exacted a bit of revenge on Nadal, who prevailed between the two Spanish stars in last year's French Open final. Ferrer hadn't beaten Nadal on clay since 2004 and is now 6-21 overall against the brilliant left-hander, including wins now in two of their last three matchups.
Nadal, who is the all-time leader with 26 Masters titles, is now 50-3 overall in Monte Carlo, including losses in two of his last four matches here.
The 27-year-old superstar was the Miami Masters runner-up to Djokovic last month and had reached the final in four of his first five tournaments this season.
On Thursday, Nadal became just the 11th man in the Open Era to reach 300 wins on clay.
Meanwhile, the fourth-seeded former world No. 1 Federer fought back to beat ninth-seeded French crowd favorite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 2-6, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1.
It took Federer 16 break points before he finally broke Tsonga for a 2-0 lead in the third set. The Swiss icon went on to break Tsonga once more before claiming victory in 2 hours, 26 minutes.
Federer was two points away from defeat, trailing 5-6, love-30 at the end of the second set, but four points later he forced a tiebreak, which he won to force what turned out to be a lopsided third.
The 32-year-old Federer, who is now 11-4 lifetime against Tsonga, lost to Nadal in three straight finals here from 2006-08.
Federer is second to Nadal with 21 career Masters shields. He was last month's Indian Wells Masters runner-up to Djokovic.
Also on Friday, third-seeded Australian Open champion Stanislas Wawrinka took care of eighth-seeded Canadian slugger Milos Raonic 7-6 (7-5), 6-2 to set-up a semifinal date with Ferrer at the first clay court Masters event of the year.
"I know I am supposed to be among the favorites, but every time I play a match I am in the state of mind of a challenger who is trying to win an additional match," Wawrinka said.
The 2014 Monte Carlo winner will collect $760,000.
04/18 12:13:20 ET