Five Records The Djokovic-Nadal Rivalry Have Broken - UBITENNIS
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Five Records The Djokovic-Nadal Rivalry Have Broken

UbiTennis looks at the milestones that has been achieved by tennis giants Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.




On Sunday afternoon at the French Open the latest instalment of one of the greatest tennis rivalries of all-time will get underway.


World No.1 Novak Djokovic will play 12-time champion Rafael Nadal on Court Philippe-Chatrier. Djokovic will be seeking only his second title in Paris and first since 2015 in what is a stark contrast to his rival. A win would make Nadal the first player – male or female – to have won 100 matches at Roland Garros and give him a record-equalling 20th Grand Slam title.

“He’s definitely my greatest rival,” Djokovic said of the world No.2 ahead of the final.
“Playing him in so many great matches over the past will of course have some effect in terms of respect towards each other.’
“Motivation to get out on the court and play your best, knowing that we both have to be at our best in order to win against each other.”

It was at the French Open where the rivalry between the two tennis greats began. In 2006 a 19-year-old Djokovic reached his first ever Grand Slam quarter-final where he faced Nadal, who is just under 11 months younger than him. Nadal rallied to a 6-4, 6-4, lead before the showdown unfortunately ended due to the Serbian suffering from a lower back injury. Little did they know at the time that the meeting would be the first of many that has rewritten tennis history books multiple times.

“The only thing I know is to play against Novak, I need to play my best. Without playing my best tennis, the situation is very difficult,” said Nadal.

To put into perspective how significant the Djokovic-Nadal rivalry is, here are five records they have been broken over the years.

  1. Sunday will be a record 56th meeting between Nadal and Djokovic. The duo holds the record for the most tour-level match-up’s on the ATP Tour in the Open Era and are one of two groups of players to have played each other 50 or more times. The second highest match-up also involves Djokovic, who has played Roger Federer 50 times.
  2. Since 1969, Nadal and Djokovic have played each other more times at the French Open than anybody else in men’s tennis. The upcoming clash will be their eighth meeting with Nadal winning six out of their previous seven matches. Making the Spaniard the player with the most victories over the world No.1 in Grand Slams – Nadal has also defeated Djokovic two times at other major events.

    On the Other hand, Djokovic is one of two players in history to have defeated Nadal at the tournament along with Sweden’s Robin Soderling.
  3. It is the ninth time the two have locked horns in a Grand Slam final. A record-equalling milestone for most major finals contested between two players. Overall they have played each other 15 times in a Grand Slam tournament and it was at the French Open where they had their first ever meeting back in 2006.
  4. For only the second time in French Open history the same two players will contest the men’s final for a third time. Nadal won their two previous final clashes back in 2012 and 2014. Both of those victories were in four sets. Nadal has also played Federer four times in the final of the French Open.
  5. Djokovic and Nadal have already played each other in 26 Tour Finals (excluding the 2020 French Open) with the Serbian currently leading their head-to-head 15-11. This is an Open Era record on the ATP Tour.

Head to head break down

Grand Slams: Nadal leads 9-6
Tennis Masters Cup/ ATP Finals: Djokovic leads 3-2
Masters 1000: Djokovic leads 16-12
ATP International Gold Series/500: Djokovic leads 2-0
ATP International/250: Tied at 1-1
Davis Cup: Nadal leads 1-0
ATP Cup: Djokovic leads 1-0
Olympic Games: Nadal leads 1-0

Clay: Nadal leads 17-7
Hard Court’s: Djokovic leads 20-7
Grass: tied at 2-2

Djokovic leads 29-26


Hubert Hurkacz Aims To Build On Delray Beach Triumph

The best way to start the season for the world No.35.




Hubert Hurkacz (image via

Poland’s Herbert Hurkacz says he hopes to play at an even higher level over the coming weeks after winning the Delray Beach Open title on Wednesday.


The world No.35 eased to a 6-3, 6-3, win over Sebastian Korda in the final to claim only the second title in his career after Winston Salem back in 2018. Hurkacz, who was the fourth seed in the tournament, didn’t drop a set all week en route to becoming the first Polish player in history to win the title. In the final he won 68% of his service points and broke Korda four times overall.

“It feels great. It is great to win the title and I am so happy about that. This Is a great start to the season,” Hurkacz said afterwards.
“I am happy that I am improving and we (my team) are doing good stuff with C.B (coach Craig Boynton), and things are working. So I am really pleased with this result.”

The 23-year-old is hoping to improve on what was a challenging 2020 season for him. After reaching the semi-finals of the Auckland Open in January last year, he could only win back-to-back matches in two out of his next 12 tournaments prior to Delray Beach. His best Grand Slam result was reaching the third round of the 2019 Wimbledon Championships.

Seeking to break new territory in 2021, Hurkacz will today start his 24-hour journey to Australia which begins with a 5am departure from America this morning. His coach Craig Boynton also currently worked with Steve Johnson and previously mentored Jim Courier.

“It’s the beginning of the season and I still need to work on a couple of things, but I hope I can play even better in Australia,” Hurkacz stated.

Hurkacz is only the second Polish player to have won an ATP Tour title in the Open Era after Wojciech Fibak. At present he is the only player from his country ranked inside the top 100 on the Tour.

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Cristian Garin Out Of Australian Open Following Fall

The South American tennis star will not travel to Melbourne due to both injury and the travel restrictions implemented.




Chile’s Cristian Garin has become the third top 30 player to pull out of the men’s draw at next month’s Australian Open.


The world No.22 has confirmed that he will not be travelling to the Grand Slam after suffering a fall in which he hurt his wrist a week ago. Announcing his decision on Instagram, Garin said the limitations in place at the tournament which wouldn’t allow him to travel with his physio played a factor. This year’s Australian Open is taking place amid strict COVID-19 rules which requires players to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival and limits the number of team members they can bring. The majority of players will be spending their quarantine in Melbourne but the top names will be in Adelaide following a recent deal secured by Tennis Australia.

I am very sad to report that a week ago I suffered a fall, which left me with a lot of pain in my left wrist (sprain),” Garin wrote on his Instagram story. “It has been very difficult for me to play the last days and given the restrictions of the tour, they do not allow me to travel with my physiotherapist, which makes it impossible to find a good recovery. Unfortunately I will not be able to play this year in Australia, which is something very difficult for me to accept. I hope to return in good condition and with the best energy for the tour in South America.”

photo via –

Garin kicked-off his season on Saturday at the Delray Beach Open where he was the top seed. However, he lost his opening match in straight sets to Christian Harrison who went on to reach the semi-finals. It is only the second tournament he has played since the French Open in October.

The setback comes after the 24-year-old confirmed that he has started working with Franco Davin back in November. A tennis coach known best for his work with Juan Martin del Potro. Davin has also previously worked with Grigor Dimitrov and Kyle Edmund.

The withdrawal of Garin follows that of Roger Federer and John Isner. Former champion Federer has pulled out due to his ongoing recovery from a right knee injury. Although one Australian Open official believes his decision was due to another factor. Meanwhile, Isner has opted not to travel to Australia because he didn’t want to spend an extended time away from his family.

The Australian Open will start on February 8th.

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Christian Harrison Speaks Out After ATP Fines Him For Not Wearing A Mask

The American says he is against ‘masking people for the sake of it for TV.’




Christian Harrison (image via

American tennis player Christian Harrison has said he will appeal a fine issued to him at the Delray Beach Open after he refused to do an on-court interview because he was required to wear a mask.


The ATP has slammed the 789th ranked player with a fine of $3000 for refusing to do the mandatory interview. However, Harrison is arguing his case by saying he believed that wearing a mask was optional and has been told by the tournament supervisor he can appeal against the fine. He has previously spoken out against wearing masks after writing last week ‘Healthy enough to play 3 hour matches. But I’m an absolute safety hazard walking maskless through a restaurant.’ On Twitter he also liked a Tweet last month by Political commentator Liz Wheeler who wrote ‘Wear a mask until EVERY person is vaccinated?! Are you insane?’

“Christian Harrison was fined $3,000 for declining the mandatory post-match on-court interview following his second round win over Cristian Garin on Saturday,” the ATP said in a statement.

Arguing his defence Harrison wrote on social media that it is ‘not healthy’ to wear a mask in the sun for longer than necessary after a match. The rule implemented is one of a series that has been taken in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In America, where Harrison is playing at the Delray Beach Open, the country has recorded more deaths from the virus than any other.

“After my second round match I chose not to do my post match interview due to wearing a mask. It’s not healthy to wear a mask in the hot sun for more time than absolutely necessary after a tough match,” he wrote on Instagram.
“I was given the impression it was optional. I wasn’t told I would be fined. That night I was told it is a requirement for T.V. matches and I would be fined. When I spoke to the supervisor the following morning, I was told since I wasn’t notified that it was mandatory I could appeal the fine and it would be taken away. Unless something changes now I still believe that to be true.”

Refusing to admit any wrongdoing, the 26-year-old says he ‘doesn’t agree’ with masking people for the sake of TV. Although he has stated that he will follow the rules in the future.

“I was required to do a sit down interview after the match with the same person which I agreed to and I did not have to wear a mask for it,” he continues.
“It’s not about safety to wear mask for TV to talk to a microphone with no one around . Playing the tournaments I’ll follow whatever is required even if I don’t agree with it. I don’t support masking people for the sake of it for TV.”

The controversy coincides with Harrison’s fairytale run at the Delray Beach Open this week. On Monday he defeated Gianluca Mager 7-6(2), 6-4, to reach the semi-finals of an ATP tournament for the first time in his career. He did wear a mask during his on-court interview following that win. The breakthrough comes after more than a decade of setbacks for Harrison who has undergone a total of eight surgeries on both legs, both hips, his right wrist, and both adductors.

Harrison will play fourth seed Hubert Hurkacz in the semi-finals.

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