Rafael Nadal Thrashes Novak Djokovic To Equal Roger Federer’s Record At French Open 2020

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Philippe Chatrier was set up to welcome the two titans for the greatest match of the tournament. Rafael Nadal faced Novak Djokovic in the final of the French Open 2020. A battle between the two greatest ever to grace the court, even adjectives falls short to describe the intensity. With 36 Grand Slam titles between them, the clash is undoubtedly a treat for the fans.

Rafael Nadal took the opening set

The opening set of the coveted final opened up with Djokovic going for the service. He accumulated some quick points, however, was unable to hold onto them and Nadal came from behind to break the service. An early strike from the Spaniard saw the first point going his way. He held on to his service and gained a quick two-game lead.

Djokovic lost two games and aimed to make his return to get in the scoresheet. However, Nadal repeated the first game’s performance to break him for the second time. Holding on to his was difficult as Djokovic tried his best to claim the game. His efforts went in vain as ultimately Rafa took the fourth game to his name.

The Serbian’s next service was pivotal for him to head back to the game. He lost his early lead to give Nadal the edge over him. Although the game proceeded to three deuces, the Spaniard was successful in making the third consecutive break. Rafael Nadal was 5 games up and served to take the set. Committing no errors, he walked away with the set without letting Djokovic open his account. The scoreline read 6-0 in favor of the Spaniard.

rafael Nadal in action in the French Open 2020 final
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – Spain’s Rafael Nadal in action during the final against Serbia’s Novak Djokovic REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

The second set went in the Spaniard’s favor

Djokovic was determined to open his scoresheet in the second set. Although Nadal was up with a couple of quick points, Djokovic came from behind to save the game. He opened his account with his service and led for the first time in the match. The lead was soon over from the scoreboard as Nadal equalized with his service in a jiffy.

The next four games went to Nadal as he broke Djokovic twice and held on to his service twice. Djokovic was absolutely stunned with the Spaniard’s gameplay. The Serbian was trying a variety of shots trying to put pressure on Nadal. His efforts were futile as Nadal answered them with all his might. He was up by 5 games to 1 and a game away from going two set up in the final.

Djokovic served under pressure to save the set once again. A couple of unforced errors from Rafa saw Djokovic claim his second game of the match. Serving for the set, Nadal faced little resistance and he walked away with the second set 6-2.

Novak Djokovic reacts after losing a point to Rafael Nadal in the French Open 2020 final
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – Serbia’s Novak Djokovic reacts during the final against Spain’s Rafael Nadal REUTERS/Charles Platiau

The third set followed in Nadal’s direction as well

Djokovic was two sets down. He had to take the third one in his favor to stay in the match. The game began in rather cautious gameplay from both the players. Both the players shared the first four games to take the score to 2 games each. Nadal inched closer to victory by breaking Djokovic’s service to go 3-2 up.

Djokovic was finding his rhythm back after staying in Rafa’s shadow for the most part of the match. He lost his service to see the Spaniard go ahead. However, showing grit and intent, Djokovic came back to equalize breaking Nadal’s service before claiming his 4th game to go 4-3 up in the third set.

Dropping the lead, Nadal was furious with himself. He churned out the anger to equalize the set 4-4 within a short while. Two games separated the fate of the two gladiators. While Nadal was two games away from pocketing the match, Djokovic was two games away from saving the match.

To go ahead of Djokovic, Nadal had to break his service once again. The Serbian was back in his rhythm and playing better than the previous two sets. He successfully defended his service to restrict Nadal’s progress. The scoreline read 5-4 in favor of the Serbian.

For the first time in the match, Djokovic was inching closer to taking the set. He needed a break to claim the set. Although, Nadal held on to his service to equalize the set for 5 games each.

In the dying moments of the set, Rafael Nadal broke Djokovic’s service all courtesy the Serbian’s double fault. Nadal served for the set and the match and there was nothing to stop the Spaniard’s aggression. Nadal took the final game of the match without letting Djokovic claim any point. He won the third set 7-5 to claim his thirteenth French Open title.

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