Novak Djokovic: "I have proven that I can do it better than in 2011" - UBITENNIS
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Novak Djokovic: “I have proven that I can do it better than in 2011”

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Novak Djokovic is full of confidence ahead of his debut in the ATP Finals against Kei Nishikori tomorrow afternoon in the opening singles match of the Stan Smith Group at the O2 Arena in London. The World Number 1 comes into the ATP Finals with an impressive 37-match winning streak. He has remained unbeaten in his last 14 matches at the ATP Finals.

This year Djokovic has reached 14 finals winning three Grand Slam titles and six Masters 1000 Tournaments. He lost only the quarter final match against Ivo Karlovic in Doha, the Roland Garros final against Stan Wawrinka and two Masters 1000 finals in Montreal against Andy Murray and in Cincinnati against Roger Federer.

This season Djokovic has recorded 78 wins in 83 matches improving his previous record set in 2011 when he won three Grand Slams (Australian Open, Wimbledon and US Open).

In 2011 Djokovic won 41 consecutive matches at the start of the season but after his triumph at the 2011 US Open he lost to Kei Nishikori in the Basel semifinal and dropped out of the Paris Bercy Masters 1000 before losing losing two of his three round-robin matches in the ATP Finals in London failing to reach the final.

In 2015 Serbian super-star has won 22 consecutive matches mathces since the US Open.

“After an incredible 2011 season, a lot of questions were raised as to whether I could do something similar. I have proven that I can do it again and I can do it even better. I feel this season is better than 2011, so having that in the back of my mind gives me a reason to keep on going. I am in love with the game. I don’t find it difficult to go out on the practice courts and prepare in the off-season, set up new goals and get as far as possible.  ”, said Djokovic

“I feel like I have found the right formula that works for me. I have realised that a holistic approach to tennis and life in general helps me a lot and gives me the best possible results.”

According to Paul Annacone, the former coach of Pete Sampras and Roger Federer, a win against Stan Wawrinka in the Roland Garros final could have raised the pressure on Djokovic ahead of Wimbledon and the US Open.

“Looking at his frame of frame of mind and the way he handled the rest of the year, I think Novak would have been pretty able to deal with it but there is no doubt Novak would have been facing a totally different landscape going into the US Open with the Grand Slam on the line. Look at what it to Serena”, said Annacone

Djokovic will be bidding to win his fifth title in the season-ending tournament. The World Number 1 won in Shanghai in 2008 and three times in London in 2012, 2013 and 2014. He was drawn in the Stan Smith Group against Roger Federer, Kei Nishikori and Tomas Berdych.

“It’s a very special event, organised at a very high level. It’s the crown for all of our achievements this year and this is where it all ends. We all want to finish the season in the best possible way. It is probably one of the most successful last eight events in the history of the sport”.

Djokovic has won 10 Grand Slam titles and this is only the beginning of a bright future.

“It truly motivates me. That’s one of the reasons why Roger is still playing, a couple of years ago when he got back to Number 1 to surpass Pete Sampras. It’s a unique opportunity for you to write your name in the golden books of the history for the sport you play that is so global and so traditional and has been played for over a century. It’s quite remarkable when you think about it. We are in the present moment, so we don’t get to feel it, but we will appreciate it over time.”, concluded Djokovic

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Iga Swiatek beats Emma Raducanu to extend her winning streak to ten consecutive matches in Stuttgart

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Two-time defending champion Iga Swiatek held off 2021 US Open champion Emma Raducanu 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 after 2 hours and 3 minutes to extend her winning streak to 10 consecutive matches at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart. 

Swiatek set up a semifinal match against 2022 Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina, who came back from a break down in the third set to beat this year’s Dubai champion Jasmine Paolini.

Raducanu came back from 0-40 down to earn the first break of the opening set. Swiatek converted her third break point in the second game in a seven-deuce second game. Raducanu saved the only other break point at deuce in the sixth game. Swiatek won the first four points and five of the first six points to win the tie-break 7-2. 

Swiatek earned five break points in the second, sixth and in the 12thgame, but she converted only one opportunity. Raducanu converted her only break point in the first game. Swiatek won nine more points than Swiatek. 

Swiatek broke Raducanu in the second game to open up a 2-0 lead. This break was decisive, as both players held on their next serve in their next games. 

Swiatek earned six break points in the third, fifth and ninth games, but she converted one chance. The Pole did not face a single break point and won eight more points than Raducanu.

“Raducanu started playing at the beginning pretty loose, like she had nothing to lose, and I totally get that. Sometimes it is like that. I knew I was questioning if she is going to be able to keep the same intensity throughout the whole match. It was not about service games or return games. I was just waiting for my chances to break back and I was sure that I am going to get them”, said Swiatek.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas beats Sebastian Ofner in Barcelona to extend his winning streak

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Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Sebastian Ofner 6-4 7-5 at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell to extend his winning streak to seven consecutive matches after claiming his third title at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters last week. 

Tsitsipas earned an immediate break in the first game. Ofner broke straight back to draw level to 1-1. Tsitsipas earned his second break  in the seventh game to take a 4-3 lead and served out the first set 6-4 with a hold at 15. 

Tsitsipas broke in the fifth game to take a 3-2 lead. Ofner won three consecutive games with two breaks of serve to take a 5-3 lead. Tsitsipas came back by winning four consecutive games with two breaks of serve to seal the second set 7-5.

Tsitsipas has a record of 17 wins to 5 defeats in Barcelona. The Greek player reached three finals at this tournament in 2018, 2021 and 2023.  

“I feel pretty good, but it is still early in the tournament. The conditions here are very different to Monte-Carlo and I felt it today when I was playing. My job is to adapt and to ensure I can bring my A game again in Barcelona this week. Today was a great test to see where I stand. I am hoping to keep on improving and getting good wins like this under my belt”, said Tsitsipas. 

Tsitssipas set up a third round match against Roberto Carballes Baena, who beat Lorenzo Musetti 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 in 2 hours and 15 minutes. 

Musetti saved three break points in the first game of the opening set. The Italian player earned two break points with a backhand down the line. Musetti saved two break points in the seventh game. Both players went on serve un the 12th game when Carballes Baena saved a set point. Carballes Baena went up a 5-1 lead with two mini-breaks in the tie-break. Musetti won three consecutive points to reduce to 4-5. Carballes Baena won the final two points to take the tie-break 7-4. 

Carballes Baena converted his fourth break point in the fourth game to take a 3-1 lead. Musetti broke back in the fifth game. Carballes Baena saved a break point in the sixth game. The Spanish player sealed the win with a break on his second match. 

Last week’s Monte-Carlo finalist Casper Ruud beat Alexandre Muller 6-3 6-4 to claim his 25th tour-level win of the season. Ruud has drawn level with Jannik Sinner for the most wins in 2024 on the ATP Tour. 

Ruud set up a third round match against Jordan Thompson, who beat Jaume Munar 6-4 2-4 6-4. Roberto Bautista Agut beat Andrea Vavassori 4-6 6-4 6-1 to claim his milestone 400th match win on the ATP Tour. Bautista Agut set up a third round match against Cameron Norrie. 

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Roberto Bautista Agut wins his milestone 400th match on the ATP Tour

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Roberto Bautista Agut came back from one set down to beat Australian Open doubles finalist Andrea Vavassori 4-6 6-3 6-1 after 2 hours and 1 minute at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell. 

Vavassori earned an early break in the first game. The Italian player earned three break points in the seventh game, but Bautista Agut saved them. The Spanish player broke straight back in the eighth game. Vavassori broke again in the ninth game to take a 5-4 lead and saved two break points before closing out the first set 6-4 on his second set point. 

Both players went on serve in the first four games of the second set. Vavassori earned a break point in the fifth game, but he did not convert it. Bautista Agut broke serve in the sixth game to take a 4-2 lead and did not face any break points to win the second set 6-3. 

Bautista Agut broke three times to cruise through to a 6-1. 

Bautista Agut reached the 400th milestone win on the ATP Tour.  The Spanish player has become the 13th active player with at least 400 ATP Tour wins. He achieved 20 wins against members of the top 10, ten wins against top 5 players and four against world number 1s. Bautista Agut is one of the nine players, who have beaten Novak Djokovic as World number 1 more than twice. 

“For me it’s just a number. The important thing is that I have done great work over these years, that I have a very consistent career, a career that I can feel proud of “, said Bautista Agut. 

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