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Nadal ready for Djokovic challenge

Nadal ready for Djokovic challenge

The battle for the Roland Garros title and also for the top position in the ATP rankings will fight first and second player in the world, N. Djokovic and defending champion R. Nadal.

Djokovic qualified for the final after he defeated Gulbis by 3-1, while Nadal outplayed Murray without much problem.

N. Djokovic is on the 2nd place in ATP rankings and has won 44 titles in his career, out of which three this season, at tournaments in Indian Wells, Miami and Rome. He played this season as the title defender at the Australian Open and Dubai but he didn’t defend the titles, losing to Wawrinka in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open and to Federer in the semi-final of Dubai.  He also didn’t manage to defend the title in Monte Carlo, as he was stopped in the semi-final by R. Federer.

Last year’s Masters in Madrid and Rome ended for him in the second round and the quarterfinals after loses to Dimitrov and Berdych, respectively. He lost dramatic and marathon match of the Roland Garros’ semi-final to Nadal, while at the Wimbledon he reached the finals but lost that match to Murray. The Masters in Montreal ended in the semifinal after a defeat by Nadal, and was defeated in Cincinnati early in the quarterfinals by Isner. The US Open ended for him in the final with another defeat to Nadal.

R. Nadal is the first player in the ATP rankings and he has won 63 titles in his career. He won three titles this season; in Doha where he defeated Monfils in the final 2-1, and in Rio de Janeiro where he outplayed Dolgopolov also by 2-1. The third title was won in Madrid after Nishikori surrendered the final match in the third set. At the Australian Open he lost the final to Wawrinka, while Dolgopolov outplayed him in the third round of the Indian Wells. He made a good result in Miami, where he played in the finals but lost to Djokovic, while he suffered surprising defeats in Monte Carlo and Barcelona by Ferrer and Almagro, respectively.

Regarding other results from the last season we will say that he lost only six matches; at the first comeback tournament in Vina del Mar to Zeballos, then in the final of the Monte Carlo to Djokovic while the biggest disappointment was certainly the defeat in the first round of Wimbledon by Darcis 3-0. In Beijing he lost the final to Djokovic 6-3, 6-4, while in the semi-finals of the Shanghai Masters he was defeated by Del Potro.

Head-to-head score between these two players is 22-19 in Nadal’s favour. They have played two finals this season; in Mimai 6-3, 6-3 and Rome 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, and Djokovic won both those matches. Last year’s Roland Garros semi-final ended with Nadal’s victory 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-7, 9-7. Nadal is always regarded at the Roland Garros and this type of surface as a favourite, but Djokovic has more motivation and will do everything to win Nadal whom he had already won twice this season.

 

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