Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 21 August 2019

MWTC: Novak Djokovic celebrates 'one of the best match points I have ever had'

The Serbian clinched fourth Mubadala World Tennis Championship title with a 30-point rally to triumph over Kevin Anderson in Abu Dhabi

Novak Djokovic labelled the moment that won him his fourth Mubadala World Tennis Championship on Saturday night in Abu Dhabi as "one of the best match points I have ever had".

The world No 1 won a stirring clash at the International Tennis Centre in Zayed Sports City against Kevin Anderson 4-6, 7-5, 7-5.

The final point was a thriller, with a long rally having both players on offence and then defence around the court as each man pushed and probed to find a winner.

___________

Read more

MWTC: Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal both have cause for optimism in 2019 after Abu Dhabi action

Djokovic comes from behind to win Abu Dhabi title

Rafael Nadal on his 2018 season: You can't say this is not a good year, it is a great year

MWTC talking points: Venus Williams makes strong pitch for more women's matches

___________

But it was Djokovic who finally won it, on his fifth match point, as his cross-court forehand from the right corner of the baseline flew past a despairing Anderson.

The rally involved 30 shots and lasted 45 seconds. Djokovic roared in delight and punched the air with both fists and he said he had loved the intensity of the event's denouement.

"It was one of the best match points I have ever had to be honest and it was good to end a thrilling match that way," he said.

Djokovic said that the high level of Anderson, the defending champion, had helped him raise his game to produce one of the best matches in the tournament's 11-edition history.

"I am happy to have a match like this," the Serb added. "Kevin was pumped from the start of the match. He got me fired up as well because I saw how focused he is.

"It was a very close match. I wanted to win as much as he did and you could see that and feel the tension on the court. A positive one, two great competitors fighting and performing some great quality tennis."

The victory capped a successful six months for the 31 year old, who has moved back to No 1 in the ATP rankings, having been down at No 22 in June, with his wins at Wimbledon and the US Open taking his tally to 14 grand slams.

Djokovic had previously won the MWTC three times in a row, between 2011 and 2013, and he now shares the record for most trophies with Rafael Nadal on four.

Djokovic added of his MWTC victory: "Matches like this, regardless of whether it is a practice match or its part of a tournament where you don't have points, or its a grand slam, you play someone on such a high level you want to end up winning because it serves your confidence and just adds up to optimism and mental strength."

Updated: December 30, 2018 03:19 PM

SHARE

SHARE

Editor's Picks