Belfast Telegraph

Nadal will fight to regain top ranking

Rafael Nadal vowed to take the fight to Novak Djokovic and warned the new world No.1 not to expect his spell to last forever.

Djokovic took his place at the head of men's tennis yesterday after defeating Nadal 6-4 6-1 1-6 6-3 on Sunday to clinch his first Wimbledon title.

It capped a dream seven months for the Serb, which also included the Australian Open and four Masters Series titles.

Djokovic has won 50 of his last 51 matches, losing only to Roger Federer in the semi-finals of the French Open, and Sunday's victory was his fifth of the season against Nadal.

Nadal said: “He's in the best moment of his career. I am in one of the best moments of my career. But still not enough for him. I have to play longer. I have to play more aggressive. I have to have less mistakes. Yes, that's what I have to do.

“I lost because I am playing against the best player of the moment, and I am the second. And when you play against these players and they are playing unbelievable, the normal thing is to lose. That's what happened the last few times.

“My experience says this level is not forever. Even for me, when I was last year winning three grand slams, my level of last year is not forever. Probably the level of Novak is not forever.

“I'm going to be here fighting all the time, waiting for my moment.

“I understand the sport like this. When one player is better than you, at this moment the only thing you can do is work, try to find solutions, and try to wait a little bit for your time.”

Djokovic has had to wait for his moment to break the monopoly of Nadal and Federer, who prior to this season had won 21 of the previous 23 grand slam titles.

Djokovic, with his Australian Open victory of 2008, and 2009 US Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro were the only other men to prevail.

Djokovic said: “Sometimes it did feel frustrating when you get to the later stages of a grand slam and then you have to meet them. They always come up with their best tennis when it matters most.

“I always believed that I have the quality to beat those two guys. I always believed I have the quality to win grand slams, and that was the only way I could be here in this position.”

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph