08. 05. 2011. ·
Novak Djokovic is the Mutua Madrid Open champion!
Brilliant Nole defeated world no.1 Spaniard Rafael Nadal in straight sets 7-5, 6-4 in 2 hours and 17 minutes in the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event final to capture his sixth title in 2011 and 24th career trophy!
This is Novak’s first victory over the Spaniard in their ten matches on clay.
Nole saved two break points in the opening game of the match. Then he made a double break, in the second and fourth games, to shock both crowd and Nadal for 4-0 lead. The Spaniard broke back once in the fifth. Djokovic was serving for the set at 5-3, he was 30-0 up, but Rafa managed to break back once again and held to level the result to 5-all. The world no.2 stayed calm, regrouped and held to love. Nole finally had some luck, two net cords fell his way, but he also took the other two points and broke the clay court expert Nadal to love to seal the set 7-5 in 68 minutes. The no.1 Serbian player hit 15 winners, 7 more than his opponent, they both made 12 unforced errors.
Nadal broke to love in the first game of the second set. The game will be remembered for a remarkable point, a lob – through the legs, running back. Nole broke back immediately for 1-1. Both players held serves till the tenth game when Rafa was serving to stay in the match. Djokovic started in thrilling style. Fantastic backhand into the corner opened up a 0-30 advantage. After another lengthy rally, the second-seeded Serb earned three championship points. He converted the second to clinch his eighth Masters career title and ended Nadal’s 37-0 win streak on clay, in Madrid, on his home court.
Match statistics: aces (3-3), double faults (1-0), winners (26-17), unforced errors (27-27).
“First of all to Rafa bad luck today,” said Djokovic at the trophy ceremony. “It’s always a big challenge to play you, you are a great champion. Hopefully we can have many more matches.”
“Well done to you and your team. What you are doing this year is really unbelievable,” Nadal said after lifting his runners-up trophy.
The 23-year-old Serb has a 32-0 mark this year which is the longest win streak to start off an ATP World Tour season since 1975, after John McEnroe’s 42-0 start to 1984.
Novak has won every tournament he’s entered in 2011: the Australian Open, Dubai, Indian Wells, Miami, Belgrade and now Madrid. He increased his overall winning streak to 34 wins in a row, dating back to last December’s Davis Cup final.
“I know this run I have is really incredible but I try not to think about how long it’s going to go and when I am going to lose,” Djokovic said. “It’s about how many more wins I am going to have. I try to think about winning.”
For the win in Madrid, Nole will be awarded with 1000 ATP points and €590,000 first prize.
“It is my goal to try to go all the way at Roland Garros and I am definitely setting my form up for that tournament. I just started the claycourt season. It was a perfect start and I need to really stay dedicated and focused.”
“There are no secrets, things came together for me,” Nole added. “I am a more mature player and a more mature person so I know what to do on the court.”
He said he was not letting himself be distracted by the possibility of topping the rankings for the first time.
“Obviously if I only keep on winning I am getting closer to the number one but I am trying not to think about that at this moment. I know that if I am to reach it I will have to play consistently well week after week because that is what Rafa will do.”
“The number one ranking is not in danger, the number one has already gone,” Nadal said at the press conference. “You must be doing something very good if you are winning every match. When he plays with that confidence he is very difficult to beat.”
Djokovic’s next stop is Rome. He’ll be no.2 seed at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia, the fifth ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament in 2011.
It will be Novak’s fifth appearance in the capital of Italy. He was champion of Rome in 2008. Last year he lost to Fernando Verdasco in quarter-finals.