15. 05. 2011. · Photo: Reuters
Veni, Vidi, Vici!
The most dominant player on the tour, Novak Djokovic, keeps the dream alive.
The world no.2 continued his perfect start to the 2011 season with a fantastic 6-4, 6-4 triumph over top-seeded Spaniard Rafael Nadal in the finals at the Foro Italico in 2 hours and 12 minutes to capture the Rome Masters trophy, his seventh ATP title this year.
This is Nole’s ninth ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title, and his second in Rome (he beat Wawrinka in 2008 finals).
It was the fourth final between the two best players in the world this year, and Nole’s fourth win over the world no.1. Djokovic was victorious also in Indian Wells, Miami and Madrid.
Novak broke Nadal’s serve in the eighth game for 5-3 and was serving for the set when the Spaniard broke back. Nole continued being aggressive. He hit a fierce forehand onto the baseline and Nadal returned into the net to hand the Serb a first set point. Djokovic took full advantage of it, stepping inside the baseline and hitting a backhand across court for a winner to take the set 6-4.
Nole made a break in the second game of the second set for 2-0 lead, but the top seed of the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event in Rome fought back immediately and held to level at 2-all. The players held their serves until the tenth game when Djokovic decided to take more risk. His aggressive approach paid off and he earned three break/match points. Nadal was serving great and saved all three, but Novak fired another huge forehand which the Spaniard returned long to hand him match point no.4. The Serb grabbed the opportunity for 6-4 and his fourth Masters title in 2011!
“He is the king of clay and he is the best player ever to play on this surface. I have won against him twice in the last eight days which I think is incredible, an incredible achievement for me, and he has given me a lot of confidence for the French Open,” said Novak after the match.
Match statistics: aces (0-2), double faults (1-1), winners (26-15), unforced errors (32-22).
Djokovic’s first serve win percentage was 75, compared to 71 for Nadal.
Nole capitalised on 4 of his 11 chances for break, while the Spaniard converted 2 of his 3 break points.
In 2011, Novak has won all 13 matches against top 10 players, Rafa fell four times, Federer three times, Murray once…
The Belgrade native will add 820 ATP points to last year’s 180 (lost in quarter-finals to Fernando Verdasco).
Nole has now won 37 consecutive matches this year, he increased his overall winning streak to 39 wins in a row dating back to last December’s Davis Cup final.
The best Serbian tennis player, who will be 24 next Sunday, will move closer to Nadal in the ATP Ranking list on Monday, May 16. The difference will be only 405 points.