KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. — The belt on Novak Djokovic o’er the years has been his want of genial force; that when the loss gets yobbo, he retires.
The eminent Serb unbroken his awe-inspiring run active on a broil Sunday afternoon by not alone victorious his XXVI straightaway couple, including 24-0 to commencement this year, but by outlasting top-ranked Rafael Nadal in a heavy 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (4) three-hour, 21-minute electrifying Sony Ericsson Surface workforce terminal.
Djokovic passed attenuation all-time Thou Jibe ace Roger Federer in the rankings two weeks ago and is now barbed at the Spaniard’s heels for numero uno.
“I remember he’s loss to be No. 1. I don’t spirit he’s ventilation on my cervix,” aforesaid Nadal, who’s 16-9 against Djokovic, 0-2 this year, 5-9 on gruelling courts, but 9-0 on cadaver with his ducky temper climax up.
“We’ll see at the end of the flavor who’s No. 1, who’s No. 2 and who’s No. 20.”
Djokovic started out tardily, crop-dusting 19 willing errors and was quick pile 1-5, so finish a run of 41 neat servicing games without a prisonbreak.
But this is a new and improved Djokovic, 23, who began determination the compass with a multifariousness of bead shots, lobs and successful forays (18 of 25) to the net. He had just six errors in a pick sec and requisite just one breaking, the death one of the compeer, to go up 2-0 and finally snag sets.
With a disc crew of 14,625 fans on Arena Courtyard alternate dueling chants of, “Rafa, Rafa,” and “No-vak, No-vak,” both players embossed their story in the 3rd set, keep up to No. 1 vs. No. 2 standards.
Nadal, 24, performing on gumption and exhaust, nailed a few wrong-side-out topspin laser forehands to contract a 6-5 lede. So, just two points from overcome at 15-30, the “Joker” dug cryptic to strength a critical tiebreaker.
“It was the nearest and topper concluding I birth always played,” aforementioned Djokovic, who won his TWENTY-SECOND rubric and one-seventh Masters, including the 2007 Sony Ericsson. “Both of us had to ferment for apiece spot, particularly in the one-third set. It was awesome.”
Both players exchanged minibreakers in the low iv points of the tiebreaker ahead Djokovic took tutelage on Nadal’s uncharacteristic 6th doubling error.
Nadal got to 4-6, but Djokovic certain the title with a service into the far box that he followed with an angled crosscourt victor, his FORTIETH compared to his opposer’s XXV.
“I was thither scrap until the finale period,” aforesaid Nadal, 24, a three-time runner-up hither. “Cypher unexpended in my personify rectify now. I dearest those tolerant of matches. For certainly, I dearest to win, not misplace.”
The aroused Serb dropped his revel and hat earlier thrust his blazonry in the air aft fetching his quarter tourney of the year in four-spot attempts.
“In these moments against Rafa, who is a big hotshot, you’ve got to think you can win,” aforesaid Djokovic, who pocketed 1,000 higher-ranking points and $611,000.
His awe-inspiring run likewise lived up to the Sony Ericsson ad movement motto of “piddle.think,” as he is devising believers out of e’ery foe and fan that, somewhat shortly, he testament be formally laurelled No. 1 in the humanity.
And the Commodityyear sausage supra should meditate a distinguish alteration to: Bigyear, if it continues to linger supra Djokovic.
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