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Djokovic fit to take part in Monte Carlo

April 16, 2013 -- Updated 1755 GMT (0155 HKT)
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will be fit to take part in the Monte Carlos Masters
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will be fit to take part in the Monte Carlos Masters
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • World No. 1 Novak Djokovic fit to take his place at the Monte Carlo Masters
  • Serbian had been struggling with an ankle injury but will play in Monaco
  • Djokovic to face Mikhail Youzhny in the second round on Wednesday
  • Rafael Nadal begins quest for a ninth straight Monte Carlo title Wednesday

(CNN) -- World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will be fit to play in Monte Carlo after a statement on his official website said his recovery from an ankle injury had gone better than expected.

The 25-year-old injured his ankle during Serbia's Davis Cup victory over the United States, throwing his participation into doubt.

Djokovic told reporters he would only take to the court if he was 100% fit, and had been stepping up his practice levels each day.

The ATP Tour confirmed to CNN that Djokovic was on the schedule of play for Wednesday hours after the player's website stated he would face Mikhail Youzhny in the second round.

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In a story previewing his clash with the Russian world No. 27, Djokovic said of his ankle: "Things are looking good. It's better than I expected it to be.

"I've been practising for the past few days on the court and before that I was working on the rehabilitation, strengthening my ankle, and we're still in the process."

The Serbian will be looking to avenge his defeat to Rafael Nadal in the 2012 final. The Spaniard, who has won the last eight Monte Carlo tournaments, starts his defense against Marinko Matosevic.

Despite his formidable record, Nadal insists he isn't the favorite, telling the ATP Tour's official website: "I don't feel I am the biggest favorite to win the tournament this year. It's not easy to win this tournament. I will go day by day,

"It's not possible to win every year. Some day that's going to stop. I will try my best to make that happen, but that's life. Not everything is forever."

The top seven seeds receive a bye into the second round and the world No. 5 Juan Martin Del Potro made hard work of his place in the third round after a battle with Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov.

Del Potro, the 2009 U.S. Open champion, eventually triumphed 1-6 6-4 6-3 in just over two hours and will now face either Canada's Milos Raonic or Jarko Niemenen, from Finland.

The No. 6 seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, from France, triumphed 7-6 6-2 over Russia's Nikolay Davydenko. He'll now face the No. 10 seed Nicolas Almagro or Jurgen Melzer.

"It was a pretty good start, but I can do better," Tsonga told the ATP Tour. "I got broken from the start. But I did play a solid match and I was able to manage the situation quite well.

"I'm happy I won because he can be a very dangerous player. He's proven it in the past. If I was able to win, it means I was able also to do something good on the court."

There were also victories on Tuesday for France's No. 7 seed Richard Gasquet, Stanislas Wawrinka, seeded 13 and Juan Monaco.

As well as Djokovic and Nadal, the No. 2 seed Andy Murray, from Britain, is in action on Wednesday. He faces Édouard Roger-Vasselin, from France.

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