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Saturday, December 21, 2019 4:57:57 AM

The world No 1 tennis player played a charity football match alongside three-time French Open champoin Gustavo Kuerten in Rio de Janeiro before a Brazilian league fixture on the weekend. With the January transfer window fast approaching, his performance may have caught the eye of a few managers in the Barclays Premier League.

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Monteiro is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese and English. He played it for the first time when his football class was cancelled and his brother called him to hit the ball.

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Thiago soon started training and disputing local tournaments: in early he won his first tournament, being only nine years old. Thiago says that if he had not made that change, he would probably be a football player.

He attends college online and has been dating fellow Brazilian tennis player, Beatriz Haddad Maia since March He ended his junior career with a 77—31 win record on singles and 47—32 on doubles.

Monteiro was also runner-up at the G1 tournament, Orange Bowl, playing in the singles draw. This same year, he won his first points on the ATP Rankings by playing two Futures' events, in doubles category.

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He won his third and final title at the 40th edition of the Banana Bowl, this time at the u16 category and also made his debut on the ATP Singles Rankings, with his participations on a Future in his birthplace, in Fortaleza.

In this last one, he defeated Matias Sborowitz on the final in straight sets. He had a better run at doubles: reaching the quarterfinals of the Australian Open and the semifinals at the French Open , both in Monteiro's last match as a junior was at the US Open.

He played in all junior's Grand Slams except Wimbledon, and also focused on Futures and Challengers tournaments. In late May, Thiago won his second Futures title, this time on clay, in Bauru.

Monteiro later played on consecutive Futures events in United States, without much success. In March, Thiago did a very successful run in Turkey : he won two back-to-back Futures, with 15 consecutive victories over two weeks. He lost in final to Bjorn Fratangelo in three sets.

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His best results were the quarterfinals in Germany and Netherlands, a performance he also achieved in IS Open and Aberto Rio Preto , but he didn't need to play the qualifiers in the latters. He ended in the th position, in singles ranking. Thiago's 5th Futures title came in late June, in Netherlands, where he defeated Boy Westerhof in three sets.

He attempted to do so in clay events, reaching the final qualifying round in the Argentina Open and the U. Over the year, Thiago entered 11 qualifier draws, breaking through 5 of them. Partnering the Italian Marco Bortolotti, the left-hander won his 2nd Futures title by defeating the Russian partnership of Victor Badula and Ivan Kalinin in straight sets.

Monteiro's lost in the final qualifying round to Tiago Lopes in three sets. The Brazilian best run at a Challenger event was in November, at the Challenger Ciudad de Guayaquil , passing through the qualifiers and reaching the quarter-finals, where he had to retire against the eventual runner-up, Guido Pella.

Thiago ended in the th position at the singles ranking.

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Thiago ranked th stunned Tsonga in three sets, [37] to set a meeting with Pablo Cuevas. Monteiro lost in straight sets and his opponent went on to win the tournament, defeating Guido Pella in the final. This time, Thiago triumphed in the first set, but Cuevas turned the game and won the match.

Playing in four tournaments, the left-hander reached the semifinals in two of them. Monteiro was beaten in straight sets by Ruben Bemelmans.

Seeded 5th, he faced another Belgian this time, Steve Darcis. The left-hander took the first set, but the Belgian grew in the match, turning it in three sets. The Brazilian won three matches against three Germans players two in the qualifiers, and Mischa Zverev in the main draw , [51] to set a third match against Pablo Cuevas.

Cuevas delivered Monteiro's third loss in the ATP World Tour, [52] but this time he didn't win the tournament, being runner-up instead. Monteiro first defeat on the tour that was not by Cuevas came by Robin Haase in the third round.

The Brazilian defeated Antoine Bellier in the first round and the second seed and top 30, Gilles Simon , in the second round. He breezed past American Trent Bryde, winning in straight sets and applying a bagel , [54] but lost to Christopher Eubanks in straight sets, at the final round.

However, Rajeev Ram withdrew from the tournament, and Monteiro was awarded with a lucky loser entry into the main draw.

Monteiro had the opportunity to serve for the match at 5—4 during the second set, but Tim denied his chances and won the match in three sets. The win also won Monteiro a spot at no. He entered the team to play against Belgium , opening the rubbers against David Goffin.

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Monteiro lost in straight sets, and Brazil finished the series 0—4. Thiago ended his year with other two quarterfinals Campinas and Buenos Aires and a semifinal Santiago appearance at Challenger events. A week later, he entered the Sydney International qualifiers draw, passed through it, but he came short again in the first round, losing to Daniel Evans.

Ranked 83rd, Thiago's ranking was enough for him to enter the Australian Open main draw directly. He set a rematch against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga , but couldn't reproduce the tennis from their first match, losing in four sets.

He also entered the doubles draw there, playing with Thomaz Bellucci , but they came short in the first round as well. Playing in Argentinian soil, Monteiro passed the 1R, defeating ex-top 10 Tommy Robredo en route to the quarterfinals of the Argentina Open , losing then to local player Carlos Berlocq in three sets.

Entering another home tournament, the Brasil Open , Thiago lost for the second time in a row to Carlos Berlocq. Starting the spring clay court season, he entered the U.

Men's Clay Court Championships main draw.

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Thiago constantly uses his lefty forehand to move his opponents around the court, winning most points with it. Being a left-hander that is more acquainted with clay courts , his style is somewhat similar to one of his idols, Rafael Nadal.

On these surfaces, Thiago vary more his game, using volleys and slices more than on clay.

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