Tsonga reaches third round at Monte Carlo Masters

Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France (Sports Network) - Heavy French favorite Jo- Wilfried Tsonga was a second-round winner Tuesday at the $3.465 Monte Carlo Masters, the third ATP Masters 1000 event of the season.

The sixth-seeded former Australian Open runner-up handled former world No. 3 Russian Nikolay Davydenko 7-6 (7-3), 6-2 on the famed red clay at Monte Carlo Country Club.

In other second-round action involving seeds, No. 7 Frenchman Richard Gasquet snuck past quality compatriot Benoit Paire 6-1, 3-6, 6-1, while rising Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov upset eighth-seeded Serb Janko Tipsarevic 7-6 (7-3), 6-1.

Another second-rounder saw 16th-seeded German Philipp Kohlschreiber hold off Spaniard Pablo Andujar 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (7-3).

In opening-round play on Day 3, 13th-seeded Swiss slugger Stanislas Wawrinka topped Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin 6-3, 7-5.

Also in the first round, Spaniard Albert Montanes doused struggling Frenchman Gael Monfils 6-2, 2-6, 6-4, Aussie Marinko Matosevic straight-setted Spanish southpaw Fernando Verdasco 7-5, 6-3 and Spain's Albert Ramos rolled past Czech veteran Radek Stepanek 6-3, 6-3. Verdasco was the Monte Carlo runner-up three years ago.

Additional opening-round wins came for Spaniard Marcel Granollers, South African Kevin Anderson, German Florian Mayer, and Austrian Jurgen Melzer.

This prestigious tennis event, which dates all the way back to 1897, has been captured the last eight years by the great Rafael Nadal, who topped Novak Djokovic in last year's marquee finale. Last year's final marked a rematch of the 2009 title match, which was also won by the clay-court king Nadal.

Nadal is 44-1 lifetime at this event and owns a record 22 Masters titles overall.

The world No. 1 Djokovic, who has been nursing an ankle injury for two weeks, is scheduled to meet Russian Mikhail Youzhny in the second round here.

This week's other top seeds are U.S. Open champion Andy Murray and the French Open stalwart Nadal. Murray's first bout of the week will come against Frenchman Edouard Roger-Vasselin, while Nadal will tangle with Matosevic.