Novak Djokovic beats Stefanos Tsitsipas to win third title — Madrid Open

Tanya Simon
May 13, 2019

In the Madrid Open finals, Tsitsipas will face the World Number one, Novak Djokovic.

Tsitsipas will draw confidence from that result ahead of the final but arguably even more so from overcoming Nadal, on clay, which Djokovic had earlier described as the "ultimate challenge" following his own 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (7/4) victory over Dominic Thiem. He will now be looking to become the first player to win three titles in 2019. "I wasn't playing my best tennis after Australia so I was looking to regain momentum this week", Djokovic said in an on-court interview. So, he was in form.

Nadal, 32, saved three match points in the final game against Tsitsipas, who is 12 years younger, but was denied his chance of reaching the tournament's final for a ninth time.

By AFP, Madrid Rafael Nadal believes he is finding his rhythm again after beginning his bid for a sixth Madrid Open title on Wednesday by beating Canadian teenager Felix Auger-Aliassime in straight sets.

Djokovic, who triumphed in 2011 and 2016, equalled Nadal's record of 33 ATP Masters 1000 titles as he won in one hour 30 minutes.

Renowned for his never-say-die attitude, the 37-year-old reached the French Open final in 2014, as well as five more Grand Slam semi-finals.

Djokovic said he was likely facing an opponent lacking a few physical reserves after a long semi-final struggle with Nadal.

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Nadal, who was yet to lose a set in Madrid this year, had beaten Tsitsipas all three previous times they played, without losing a set, including in the semifinals of the Australian Open.

Top seed Novak Djokovic beat France's Jeremy Chardy 6-1, 7-6 to clinch the quarterfinals.

Thiem ran Djokovic close enough to suggest he will also be a serious contender again in Paris, where the Austrian was runner-up to Nadal a year ago.

And Djokovic showed just how fresh he was during a insane point in the first set tiebreaker.

Tsitsipas brilliantly shaped another opening and sent Nadal into the net at close range for the second break, meaning a riposte from the world number two merely delayed a stunning victory until the end of a marathon next game.

"These are the best tournaments, biggest tournaments we have in our sport, in the ATP, of course alongside the Grand Slams", Djokovic said.

"I think everything went very well for me today", said Halep, a two-time champion in Madrid.

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