World Number one tennis player Novak Djokovic is through to the finals of French Open 2020 and will face his arch-rival, Rafael Nadal, for the 56th time in his career. The Serb seems to set to face Nadal’s challenge on the Parisian Terre-battue and will try his best to beat the eventual King of Clay in his own backyard.
Besides Robin Soderling, Djokovic is the only man to dethrone Rafa on Court Philippe-Chatrier during the quarterfinals in 2015. It is one of the highlights in the tennis world and also on a personal level. That match holds a special place in Novak’s book of records.
Top-seed Novak Djokovic will take insights from his half-a-decade-old straight sets encounter against Rafael Nadal in Paris. He will try to implement those tactics from that match during this Sunday’s final on the world’s premier clay-court.
“I’m not feeling exhausted physically so much after tonight’s match, obviously almost 4 hours. It was a great battle. But I feel fine. I think a day and a half will be plenty of time for me to recover. I’m really looking forward to a great battle with Rafa,” Novak said.
“I did lose to him on this court most of the matches that we played, but I also won one match in 2015 in straight sets in quarters. That’s the match that I’ll look back at and obviously try to take some positives out of it and use it tactically against him.”
In 2015, the tournament was held during the months of May and June and but right now, needless to say, the conditions have changed in the Autumn months. Consequently, the new Wilson balls do not bounce as high as they used to during the spring. That ultimately gives Novak an opportunity to seize his 18th Slam, as Rafa is not comfortable playing low bounce balls.
“Obviously the conditions are different than the ones that we are used to playing in May and June. I think that could be a better chance for me, obviously, the ball not bouncing as high over the shoulder as he likes it usually,” he added.
“That would be an icing on the cake. I hopefully will be able to play my tennis because that’s what’s gonna be needed, but I’m in a position to be close to the trophy. I’ve been there, I’ve done it, I know what needs to be done.”
“I’ve played him more than any other player in my career. He’s definitely my greatest rival. Playing him in so many great matches, the past will have some effect in terms of respect towards each other and motivation to get out there and play your best.”
The two glass towers of tennis, Nadal and Djokovic will lock horns in a Grand Slam for the first time since the Australian Open 2019 finals. Beyond the shadows of doubt, the duo has bestowed the tennis world with incredible tennis matches, and once again in the era of a pandemic, the two men will put up an entertaining show on the Terre-battue of Paris!