Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic locked horns for a ninth time at the French Open last week. The head to head record in Paris, was in Nadal’s favor as he had beaten the Serbian on seven occasions. The Spaniard had the mental edge, given that he dominated Djokovic in the finals of French Open 2020.
However, this time, Novak Djokovic got the better of Rafael Nadal at French Open 2021 in the semifinals. The Serbian won in four sets in a match that is regarded as one of the greatest ones ever played on all surfaces. The high-intensity battle between the two lasted for over four hours, with both players demonstrating incredible hitting from the baseline.
Gilles Simon, a veteran on tour opined on the Rafael Nadal-Novak Djokovic clash at the French Open, and stated that it was a mind-blowing affair.
Gilles Simon praises the intensity of the Nadal-Djokovic semifinal
Not many players are blessed with the level of mental toughness like Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. The duo put up a show for the ages last week, as they produced winners almost out of nowhere. The third set lasted for over 90 minutes, with the Serbian winning it in a close tiebreaker.
Gilles Simon praised the intensity with which the duo played, and stated that such intensity is almost impossible to achieve in the sport. “Nadal-Djokovic match was mind-blowing. Their mental toughness, physical strength and tennis level are just unattainable,” said Simon.
Novak Djokovic went on to win the finals in another five set thriller against the NextGen star, Stefanos Tsitsipas. The world number one had to come back from two sets down to defeat the world number five, and claim his 19th Grandslam title.
Also Read: Latest ATP Rankings post French Open 2021