The best players in the world meet in the final match of the 2014 French Open—a perfect ending for what was another memorable and highly-charged Grand Slam run at Roland Garros. No. 1 vs. No. 2, Rafael Nadal of Spain vs. Novak Djokovic of Serbia.
“He beat me four times but he never beat me here,” confidently says Nadal via the tournament’s official website.
Djokovic concedes that he may not be the favourite despite winning four straight against Nadal before the final in Roland Garros.
“I think there is no doubt that he is the favourite to win the title there. But, OK, I have been playing some good tennis … Rome a few weeks ago against him in the final definitely gives me confidence and hopefully self-belief before our match,” said Djokovic.
Still the pre-tournament tabs on both won’t matter much after the first serve is taken. In their head-to-head match-ups in their careers, Nadal holds the slight edge, 22-19.
Djokovic has taken the last four, all matches for a championship; at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 in Rome Italy, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3; ATP World Tour Masters 1000 in Miami, Florida, 6-3, 6-3; ATP World Tour Finals in Great Britain, 6-3, 6-4; and the China Open, 6-3, 6-4.
Still, Nadal is the top seed and when the rivals met in this big a stage—the 2013 US Open—it was the Spaniard who came out on top 6-2, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.
Nadal is targeting for his 9th title in Roland Garros while Djokovic is aiming for his 9th Grand Slam title overall and the 3rd at the French Open. Will Nadal reign in clay or can Djokovic continue his recent domination of the Spaniard?