Novak Djokovic

Djokovic staves off Tsitsipas danger to land sixth Rome title in advance of French Open defence

The entire world amount 1 explained he played a “perfect established” to race by way of the opener, before coming from a break down in the second to gain a 6- 7-6 (7-5) victory in Sunday’s remaining.

Djokovic produced it a record-extending 38th Masters 1000 title in what was his 55th last at this degree, and it was his sixth triumph at this celebration in the Italian capital.

At 34 a long time, 11 months and 23 days aged, Djokovic is 10 days more mature than the prior oldest Rome champion, Rafael Nadal, who took the title previous 12 months.

He boosted his head-to-head report to 7-2 versus Greek star Tsitsipas, winning their past 6 matches and all five they have contested on clay, which include very last year’s French Open final in which Djokovic came from two sets at the rear of to scoop the grand slam. This victory evidently augurs effectively for Djokovic’s approaching title defence in Paris.

Djokovic broke serve to like in the opening game, Tsitsipas swatting a volley into the net to hand above the early edge and set the tone for a wildly a single-sided set.

Tsitsipas broke to direct 3-1 in the next established and he served for it at 5-3 but was broken to 15, sending a forehand wide on recreation issue. The tie-split that shortly adopted was really hard fought, with Tsitsipas looping a backhand extended on match stage as Serbian Djokovic acquired the trophy the moment once more.

Reflecting on his quickly begin, and his very first title of 2022, Djokovic reported on Amazon Primary: “I pleasantly stunned myself, I can say, even although I experienced a distinct recreation prepare and strategy coming into the match. I knew what to count on from the other side so I knew what I experienced to do, but I did perform a best established, no doubt about it.

“After that it was a minor bit tight, the commencing of the second for me. He utilised it, and at this degree a single or two factors can convert a match all around and he was back in the match. At 4-1 up for him and 30-40, the match could have effortlessly long gone into a 3rd set, but I by some means managed to uncover the right photographs at the correct time to occur back in the match, and the tie-breaker, I guess I was just an inch improved, probably calmer, and it was a limited tie-break for each of us.”

In advance of the French Open, which receives below way next Sunday, Djokovic is sensation in fantastic form for his title defence. Acquiring skipped the Australian Open in January in a deportation drama, Djokovic will head to Paris as a significant rival to teenage feeling Carlos Alcaraz.

Should Djokovic triumph at Roland Garros, he would match Nadal’s men’s file of 21 grand slams.

“I’ve been making my kind in the past few of weeks and like the previous years I understood that my greatest form on clay was normally coming all around Rome time,” Djokovic said.

“So it couldn’t be a greater time, coming into Roland Garros with a title at this amazing event. I am likely to Paris with a large amount of self-confidence.”

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