Monte Carlo – final

(1)Novak Djokovic d. (3)Rafael Nadal    6-2, 7-6(1)    [1:52 h]

Year after year, Nadal was unbeatable in Monte Carlo #, and many fans could expect he would collect another titles until his retirement. Actually I can’t imagine any other player than a Monte Carlo resident Djokovic, breaking that unbelievable winning streak. Circumstances before the final were  beneficial for the Serb, he saved a lot of energy winning previous two matches nadal_mc13finaleasily, while Nadal had tougher road to the MC-final in his past two matches than ever. Moreover conditions weren’t Nadal’s ally, the weather was rather ugly because the rain fall on Sunday (delayed the final 50 minutes) slowing the court down which meant Nadal’s heavy topspins couldn’t bounce extremely high as he loves it. The wise Djokovic sensed his chance in the initial assault and gave his best from the very beginning. He broke in the 2nd game (despite Nadal’s three game points) and took the momentum. The Spaniard had to force himself to harder work increasing the speed of his 1st serve considerably to save five set points avoiding a bagel set! Djokovic lost his sharpness, but gained the set on eight set point. Anyway, since Nadal stepped up in the sixth game, the match got the intensity everyone counted on. The 8-time champion raced to a 4:2* lead in the 2nd set when Djokovic regrouped and came back to the level he’d delivered in the first six games, managing to win three games in a row. It meant Nadal found himself as close defeat as never before during the record streak. He stayed cool though, held at 15, and a break in the following game put him in a position to serve the set out. Djokovic rested very well during the changeover and his blistering forehands gave him a break at ‘love’ and the possibility to enter the tie-break, in which Nadal played way beyond his abilities in terms of strokes and mental focus. The Serb quite easily produced five match points in a row, and finished the job on the first occasion with a booming forehand off Nadal’s return. “I think anybody who saw my djokovic_mc13finalexpression in the end saw that it was a very emotional win for the reasons [of] living here and what I’ve been through in the last two weeks. It’s a very joyful moment for me,” said Djokovic. “I wanted that trophy badly all my life, especially in the last six, seven years that I’ve been spending my time and living here between the tournaments in Monaco. This is a great confidence boost before the rest of the clay-court season. The first six, seven games, eight games, were unbelievable. It’s the best that I can play on clay.” It’s Djokovic’s 37th title (14 Masters). For Nadal it’s been not only first loss in Monte Carlo since 2003, the defeat marks an end of 18-match winning streak (he had won three consecutive tournaments): “It is not a tragedy. I lost after eight years without losing here. Today, he was better than me… He’s a fantastic player. If you are not at 100 per cent, [it] is very difficult to win against these kinds of players. His game is very complete. To win, I have to play my best and I have to bring him to the limit.”

Doubles final:
J.Benneteau/N.Zimonjic d. (1)B.Bryan/M.Bryan 4-6, 7-6(4), [14-12] – 7 m.p.

Longest winning streaks in one tournament:
46 – Rafael Nadal (Monte Carlo 2005-13)
41 – Bjorn Borg (Wimbledon 1976-81)
40 – Roger Federer (Wimbledon 2003-2008 & US Open 2004-09)
38 – Guillermo Vilas (Buenos Aires 1973-81)
Match stats (total points: 78-61):
Djokovic: 6 service, 2 aces, 13 FH, 6 BH, 4 volleys, 1 overhead, 1 dropshot
Nadal: 10 service, 2 aces, 10 FH, 1 BH, 3 volleys, 2 overheads
Djokovic: 0 double faults, 14 FH, 18 BH
Nadal: 3 double faults, 20 FH, 22 BH
Break point conversions:
Djokovic: 5/12 (6 games)
Nadal: 3/6 (4 games)
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