Saturday, 28 May 2011

Roland Garros: 40-0 Djokovic

No, that's not a game score, just Novak Djokovic's Win-Loss record in 2011 (42-0 total).

After yesterday's interruption of the match between Djokovic and Juan Martin Del Potro at one set all, it wasn't clear who's going to have the advantage today. Both players had time to rest, and they've essentially played two best-of-three matches day after day, just like in a regular tournament. In the end, it was Djokovic who used the break in play to collect himself and come to the match much more focused than he was yesterday.

I wish I could describe how both of them played today, but I was watching the match on a low-quality stream, which kept getting stuck, so I don't think I can do it too objectively based on the highlights video. There is one incredible point that left me in awe, where Delpo got to Novak's dropshot, and passed it in an unbelievable angle to the other side of the net. Other than that, watch for yourself (that point is there, towards the end of the video) - right here.

Another thing that should be said about this match, both yesterday and today, is the attitude of respect that showed at all time between both players. Steve Tignor described it here, and just to quote a small part:
Marks were inspected on request and rubbed out without hesitation. When del Potro briefly came up limping on a bad ankle, Djokovic immediately began walking toward the net to see how he was. Even better was the way they acknowledged each other’s good shots.
This is the other half of the same coin, but as I've mentioned before, I just love this:


(It looks much better on video, to be frank, but I can't find one at the moment)

Edited to add another photo, because it's way better:


And edited once again, as there's now a video available:

(Photos: Roland Garros facebook page, Getty Images)

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