Novak Djokovic put up a magnificent performance in the Rome Masters as he reached the final. Having survived two consecutive three-set matches against Stefanos Tsitsipas and Lorenzo Sonego, it seemed that he would head into the clash against Nadal fatigued. However, in a tremendous display of determination, Djokovic took a set off Nadal. The Spaniard, though, showed his mettle on clay courts as he won the match 7-5,1-6,6-3 to win the Rome Masters for the 10th time. This was the fourth tournament that Nadal won for the 10th time or more.
However, after the match, Novak Djokovic said he was actually happy with the way how he played. The performance in Rome has given him tremendous confidence for the French Open. “I’m disappointed not to win it, but at the same time, I’m very pleased with the level of tennis that I managed to find in the later stages of this tournament. Going into Paris brings me a good sensation. I actually now started to feel like I actually want to feel on clay. I think if I manage to play the way I played last night and today, I think I have a good chance to go all the way in Paris,” Djokovic said.
Djokovic’s head-to-head record against Nadal now stands at 29-28, with Nadal having extended his advantage on clay to 19-7. In addition, Nadal has won their last five encounters on clay against Djokovic. Although the Serb is one of the two players to have beaten Nadal in the French Open, he now wants to stop Nadal from registering a record 14th French Open title.
“I’m just going to rejuvenate, regroup, and then start training again some days before the start of the Belgrade Open. I have to obviously keep the momentum going I feel with the quality of tennis. Do more training and a few more matches. I think I’m on the right way. The last couple of days really gave me a confidence boost for the clay. I found the game. So now I just have to maintain that level and peak in Paris,” Djokovic said.
The 2021 French Open will be played on May 24 and end on June 13. The 2020 edition of the French Open was held in September due to the coronavirus pandemic. Floodlights were used for the first time in 2020.