Monfils can't tame Djokovic

Gael Monfils (FRA)(green/black shirt), in action against number 1 ranked Novak Djokovic (blue...

Gael Monfils (FRA)(green/black shirt), in action against number 1 ranked Novak Djokovic (blue shirt). Stan Behal/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency

Ian Shantz, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:13 PM ET

Late in his wild second-round match loss to world No. 1 Novak Djokovic on Wednesday at the Rogers Cup in Toronto, Frenchman Gael Monfils was protecting at the net.

He reached out to somehow get the ball back on his Serbian opponent's side.

Then, Djokovic sent another shot hurrying even further to Monfils' left side.

Monfils extended his arm and, upon realizing he wasn't going to get to the ball, threw his racquet towards it — a last-ditch effort, like something a kid might do on a neighbourhood court.

It's a play Monfils has tried once before in his career, he said: "A winner. Against (Jurgen) Melzer."

It was that kind of desperate approach that allowed Monfils, ranked 22nd and having previously topped out at No. 7 in the world back in 2011, to have a chance.

Ultimately, he was unable to topple Djokovic, the champion in 2012 in Toronto.

A win by the lesser seed would have dramatically altered the landscape at the Rexall Centre.

Monfils bows out, losing 2-6, 7-6(4), 7-6(2) — his 10th straight defeat at the hands of the Serbian winner — but not before giving fans an early treat of epic proportions.

"He's simply the best at the moment," Monfils said of Djokovic. "His timing is great. He's always on time. He's just the No. 1 for a reason."

Djokovic, who faces Jo-Wildfried Tsonga next in the third round on Thursday, didn't mind that his first match back on the hard court after winning Wimbledon last month lasted two hours, 40 minutes.

"That helps ... to feel the court, to feel the conditions," Djokovic said. "I'm not feeling tired, I'm not exhausted. I haven't played a tournament in four weeks and, of course, I look forward to playing more."

NESTOR COMES THROUGH

Leave it to Daniel Nestor to supply a boost.

On the heels of some disappointment, with four Canadians bowing out of the Rogers Cup in Toronto on Tuesday, Nestor and doubles partner Nenad Zimonjic of Serbia gave the hometown crowd reason to cheer on Wednesday.

The duo defeated Serbian Novak Djokovic and Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland, 6-4, 6-4, in second-round doubles play.

Toronto-raised Nestor and Zimonjic are ranked second in the world in doubles and showed why against world No. 4 in singles Wawrinka and world No. 1 Djokovic, who was coming off a marathon three-set singles win over Gael Monfils earlier in the day.

Nestor and Zimonjic's next opponent had yet to be determined as of early Wednesday night.


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