Novak Djokovic is again.
Whether or not he ever really went away is up for debate however the man who waltzed to his third consecutive Grand Slam title in Australia in the beginning of the season has felt considerably lacking in motion. Not anymore.
In Sunday’s Madrid Open closing, the world No. 1 was a pleasure to behold. Pragmatically fixing the Stefanos Tsitsipas puzzle with consummate ease, his laser-like strokes piercing by the Greek’s defence.
His 6-Three 6-Four victory in an hour and 32 minutes noticed him carry his third title on the Caja Magica – sustaining his 100% finals record in these components – and his 33rd at Masters 1000 degree, equalling Rafael Nadal’s haul.
The highest seed didn’t drop a set all through the week’s motion – every week the place event organisers welcomed a record attendance of 278,110 specators – and joined an ATP-leading group of gamers who has gained two titles in 2019.
Tsitsipas is part of that now five-man membership – together with Roger Federer, Dominic Thiem and Cristian Garin – however failed to grow to be males’s tennis’ outright most profitable participant this season as he fell to the all-conquering Serb..
At occasions Tsitsipas was left scrambling across the baseline like Bambi on ice. Bamboozled by Djokovic’s lethal correct and efficient hitting, failing to penetrate his immaculate defence.
Djokovic’s forehand is commonly discarded given how ridiculously good his backhand is however he dictated play off that facet, repeatedly probing, looking for holes within the younger Athenian’s recreation. As a rule, significantly behind his personal serve, he discovered them.
The Greek had described himself as ‘Courageous Stefanos’ after defeating Nadal on this floor within the semi-finals however he was not mighty sufficient on this event to put this mythological Serbian creature to the sword.
Would anybody be able to beating Djokovic on this kind of kind? Presumably not..
‘King of Clay’ Nadal would definitely lay the largest declare however and not using a title in 2019, he could nicely enter the French Open because the second favorite behind the 31-year-old, who can declare a second ‘Novak Slam’ and maintain all 4 main trophies without delay.
Nadal will get another likelihood at a clay-court title prior to that in Rome subsequent week however the stage is about for the 11-time champion to do battle together with his biggest rival on the French Open subsequent month.
Djokovic was his ordinary calm self from the off and invited errors from the Greek’s racquet by making him play an additional ball. That was the case as Tsitsipas over-extended on a forehand and despatched it barely past the baseline for the Serb to take a 2-Zero lead.
Tsitsipas was deploying the drop-shot usually – with a combined success fee – however one significantly beautiful slide from Djokovic, which left an enormous mark on the courtroom, noticed him equal to an honest effort as he continued to comfortably stroll by the primary set.
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) May 12, 2019
That wasn’t by an absence of attempting on the Greek’s half. There have been some sometimes ferocious groundstrokes however his backhand was having much less pleasure putting to Djokovic’s backhand – arguably the best two-hander of all time – than it did going into Nadal’s forehand.
Tsitsipas deserves credit score for remaining only a break down in opposition to Djokovic on this kind of temper however there was no actual signal of a comeback within the opener as the highest seed moved him from pillar to submit, totally dominant on serve.
Two break level possibilities got here and went for Djokovic in the beginning of the second set, with Tsitsipas serving nicely underneath stress, however he finally discovered the breakthrough at 4-4. It abruptly introduced concerning the finish of any problem from the eighth seed.
In the meantime, there was excellent news from a British perspective. Dan Evans booked his spot in the principle draw of the Italian Open with a win over overwhelmed Monte Carlo finalist Dusan Lajovic, whereas Cam Norrie additionally confirmed his place by defeating Nicolas Jarry. Heather Watson additionally obtained again to successful methods, beating Kazakhstan’s Zarina Diyas in straight units to win a 60ok occasion in Japan.