Novak Djokovic narrowly avoided an early exit from the Monte Carlo Masters on Tuesday with a 6-3 3-6 7-5 victory over Gilles Simon.
Second-seeded Novak Djokovic had to come back from 5-4 down in the decider to win the second-round matchup against host player Gilles Simon by 2-1 at ATP Monte-Carlo Masters on Tuesday.
While French top player Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was disappointed by fellow Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 2-1 in the first match since the birth of his son.
It was the first appearance for Djokovic on clay after his success in last year's French Open. The world No. 2 suffered many unforced errors, and had to take the must-win three games from 5-4 down in the third set to seal a 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 victory.
"After I was 6-3, 2-1 up, I felt like I had the control of the match, but since then I started to make some unforced errors," commented Djokovic.
"He was two, three points away from winning it. Finally, I got out of that tricky situation, which was probably the most positive thing I take from today," he added.
Tsonga took time off following the birth of his first child in March, and he may find it a bit difficult to get back the form in his return.
Tsonga wasted a 7-6 (3) win in the first set, as Mannarino took away the next two sets at 6-2 and 6-3.
Djokovic and Mannarino were joined in last 16 by No. 10 seed David Goffin and No. 16 Pablo Cuevas.
11th-seeded Lucas Pouille of France, last seeded player to feature in the first round, eliminated Ryan Harrison of United States at 6-2, 6-4.