Djokovic eyes pre-French Open rest after Monte Carlo exit


Novak Djokovic believes his early elimination at the Monte Carlo Masters will help him enter the French Open in top condition.

Defending champion in Monte Carlo, Djokovic started his clay season with a 6-4 2-6 6-4 defeat to world number 55 Jiri Vesely on Wednesday, falling to just his second defeat of 2016.

Success at Roland Garros has so far eluded Djokovic, who has lost three finals in Paris.

The world number one will have another chance to get into form on dirt courts at the Madrid Open and Rome Masters. The event in Spain does not get under way until May 1, giving Djokovic almost three weeks to rest.

"You never like to lose and think that that's going to help your future," he said after becoming Vesely's first top-10 ranked victim. "That's not the way I am, I don't calculate.

"Of course Roland Garros is the big one on clay, but I love playing Monte Carlo. It's disappointing to lose the first match, playing at home in a way. I practice on these courts, I've lived here for last eight, nine years so definitely not something that I wished or wanted but it's sport, you got to accept it.

"I think the time off will serve me well mentally mostly, it's been a tough four five months so I need time to recharge."