World No.1, Novak Djokovic will meet the latest top 10 debutant, Hubert Hurkacz in the 2021 Paris Masters semi-final on Saturday, 6th November.
Novak Djokovic vs Hubert Hurkacz: Match Details
- Tournament: Paris Masters 2021
- Match: Novak Djokovic vs Hubert Hurkacz
- Round: Semi-finals
- Prize Money: $122,547
- Date: November 6, 2021
- Venue: Paris, France
- Surface: Indoor Hard Court
Novak Djokovic vs Hubert Hurkacz: Preview
This is Novak’s first tournament since his US Open disappointment two months ago where he lost the chance of winning a calendar slam by suffering a defeat at the hands of Russian star, Daniil Medvedev in the final match. Although the Serb has advanced rather comfortably, he’s yet to display his best tennis.
The Serbian World No.1 cruised past the dangerous Taylor Fritz 6-4 6-3 to reach the Paris Masters semifinals for the sixth time. Having come through a tough opening match against Márton Fucsovics, he benefitted from a day off as Frenchman, Gael Monfils pulled out from their Round of 16 encounter due to an injury.
That did not work in the favour of Djokovic’s best interests who needed matches to get in the groove. He had to overcome a few jitters in his quarter-final clash against Frtiz and will now be looking to reach his second Masters 1000 final of the season.
The 24-year old from Poland, Hubert Hurkacz has put together the best season of his career to date. The youngster has broken into the top 10 less than three weeks ago. Hurkacz has claimed three titles on the year, most notably the Masters 1000 tournament in Miami. An impressive display at the Moselle Open in September, where he won both the singles and doubles titles.
Moreover, he achieved his first Major semifinal at The Championships, taking out both Medvedev and Roger Federer. Hurkacz had just one thing playing on his mind when he trotted on Centre Court at the 2021 Paris Masters – victory over James Duckworth would seal his place at the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time in his career. And the Pole made no mistake as he saw off the in-form Aussie in a pulsating three-setter.
Novak Djokovic vs Hubert Hurkacz: Head to head
Novak Djokovic leads Hubert Hurkacz 2-0 in their head to head battle, with both matches coming in the 2019 season. Incidentally, both matches were contested at Grand Slam tournaments.
Djokovic won the first meeting at the French Open in straight sets, but the Pole proved a tough nut to crack at Wimbledon pushing the World No.1 to four sets.
Novak Djokovic vs Hubert Hurkacz: Match Prediction
Djokovic is 6-0 in previous semifinal matches in Bercy and the man is will not slip when he is at the business stage of a Masters 1000 level tournament. With a title at the Paris Masters, Novak Djokovic will be aiming to clinch the year-end No.1 ranking for a record seventh season.
Hurkacz got 17 aces past Duckworth in the quarterfinals. He had another 18 against Dominic Koepfer in the third round, and 13 more in two sets in his opening win against American Tommy Paul. That’s 48 aces to just six double faults.
But given how well Djokovic neutralized Fritz’s big serving on Friday, the Pole will be hard-pressed to keep up those numbers. Given the slowish surface in Paris, it’s even tougher to get the ball past Djokovic whether it’s on the serve, or with a big forehand.
Djokovic dispelled fears that he might be short of match practice, dismissing an in-form Taylor Fritz in straight sets. Hurkacz will be nerveless and might swing freely now that he has qualified for the ATP Finals. Remarkably enough, the Serb has never lost at this stage in Bercy before therefore Hurkacz will certainly have a mountain to climb on Saturday.
In a week where many seeded players have tumbled like flies, Djokovic has avoided that parade.
Prediction: Djokovic to win in three sets.
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