Nadal v Djokovic
Has it ever happened before that we have to all intents and purposes two world number 1’s in the Final? Nadal is still officially number 1 but when the new rankings are announced tomorrow Djokovic will be top dog regardless of today’s result.
Nadal ended Britain’s hope for a Murray win for another year. He went a set down but when Murray’s self belief wavered he was more than capable of taking full advantage. He has improved as the tournament progressed and must be happy with the way he’s playing as he prepares this morning.
Djokovic hasn’t looked quite as dominant as he has in recent months but the levels that he has reached this season would be almost impossible to maintain indefinitely. One of his main strengths is that he plays the massive points superbly well. He is as capable as anyone is of lapses in concentration but more often than not he can dig himself out of any tough situations.
One thing that has been lacking over the last fortnight is Djokovic’s backhand. Normally one of his most effective shots it has been reduced to the standard of mere mortals.
Djokovic has won their last 4 matches which were all finals including 2 on Nadal’s best surface, clay. They have only played twice on grass with Nadal winning both matches although Djokovic retired at Wimbledon 2007.
Nadal is so tough to beat in the Grand Slams. The last Slam final that he lost was 4 years ago and he has won 7 since that loss to Federer. When he went a set down against Murray the look on Nadal’s face was anger. Today he meets the guy who is about to take his number 1 status from him and he has something to prove for the first time in a long while.
Djokovic is a great battler and the player of the season so far but today the angry Spanish bull is likely to be unstoppable.
Every possibility that we see an absolute classic today.
Update: In the end the angry bull was turned into steak and chips. A below par performance from Nadal but take nothing away from Djokovic. Great win 6-4, 6-1, 1, 6, 6-3.