World No.1 Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka and Marin Cilic are the top players who will feature at the 2018 Monte-Carlo Masters, according to tournament director Zeljko Franulovic.

The Spaniard is the defending champion, having won the tournament for the record 10<sup>th time in 2017. He has not enjoyed a good start to the calendar year as a hip injury forced him to withdraw from the quarter-final clash against Cilic at the 2018 Australian Open.

Djokovic missed the second half of the 2017 season due to an injury, but returned to the court in January. He lost to Hyeon Chung in the fourth round of the Australian Open. The Serbian confirmed last week he had undergone a "small medical intervention" in the wake of complaining about a long-running elbow problem.

Despite a "tricky start" to 2018 season for Nadal and Djokovic, Franulovic expects the duo and other tennis stars to be available for the Monte-Carlo Masters that will take place between 14 to 22 April.

"This year again, and despite a start of the season a bit tricky for some. We are preparing to welcome the best players in the world like Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Marin Cilic, Alexander Zverev, David Goffin, Stan Wawrinka ..." Franulovic was quoted as saying my Monte-Carlo Masters' official website.

Roger Federer was not a part of the 2017 Monte-Carlo Masters and Franulovic did not mention if the 20-time Grand Slam winner will be involved in this year's event.

Meanwhile, Franulovic also expressed his delight after a record crowd turnout at the last edition of the tournament.

"Last year, we again benefited from an exceptional plateau with the participation of 17 of the top 20 players in the world, including Andy Murray, Djokovic, and Wawrinka and most of the young rising stars of world tennis," Monte-Carlo Masters tournament director said.

"An edition that was the one of all the records. Helped by exceptional weather, the tournament recorded a record crowd with a total of 135,809 spectators. We played sold out from Monday to Sunday on all five courts of competition. A first for us!"

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal defeated Albert Ramos Viñolas in the 2017 Monte-Carlo Masters Reuters