Djokovic Runs The Rule Over Nadal To Claim First Doha Title

The final ceremony in Doha with runner-up Rafael Nadal and champion Novak Djokovic (photo: QTF)

DOHA, January 9, 2016

Novak Djokovic gained his 24th victory over Rafael Nadal, and also the clearest one, winning the final of the Qatar Exxon Mobil Open in Doha on Saturday 6-1, 6-2.

The world number one played an almost perfect match, racing through the first set and Nadal was not able to keep the pace in the following either. Djokovic hit 30 winners, won 79% of his first service and 73% of his second service points to leave the 29-year-old Spaniard without any chance. The performance of the 28-year-old from Serbia was without any weaknesses and consequently he claimed his first ever Doha title after one hour and 13 minutes.

Djokovic lifted his 60th ATP World Tour trophy, tying Andre Agassi for 9th place on open era title list. He takes away $201,165 in prize money as well as his first 250 ATP ranking points of the season.

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal (photo: QTF)

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal (photo: QTF)

“I played perfect tennis. Right from the beginning, I managed to hit every shot the way I wanted. This gives a lot of confidence and is a great feeling. It did feel as close to perfection as it can get. Obviously from the first to the last point I managed to impose my own tactical approach and strategy and what I have kind of prepared myself for, and the conditions were played to my favour. I just came out on the court with the right intention, with the right intensity, and with a great deal of confidence, as well, that I carried from the last season playing against him in the last couple of matches as well winning in straight sets,” the Serbian told after winning his 32nd hard court title, in which he only produced 13 unforced errors. Nadal, who appeared in his 99th tour final, didnt’t play a bad match, hitting the same amount of unforced errors and Djokovic was still full of respect for his opponent.

“Everytime we play each other, it’s a great challenge. Both of us have to go through a lot of emotions getting ready. Matches like those give me great satisfaction,” Djokovic told and was happy to receive a special trophy.

“This trophy will be very dear to my heart. It reminds me of someone special in my family, as my grandfather used to call me ‘Falcon'”, he explained.

Novak Djokovic with his "Falcon trophy" (photo: QTF)

Novak Djokovic with his “Falcon trophy” (photo: QTF)

Nadal could find some positives from this week.

“It has been a positive start of the season, obviously not today but I played against a player, who is at a level that is difficult to imagine. Today, he’s better than me. We will see in two weeks or we will see in five months. The only thing that you can do is wait that the opponent is not playing like this all the time. That is difficult to play like this all the time. It’s obvious. I am going to wait for my moment.”” the world number 5 had to admit and added.

“The match is easy to analyse. I played against a player who did everything perfect. I don’t know anybody who played tennis like this ever. Since I know this sport I never saw somebody playing at this level. So I just congratulate him and that’s it. I know I can do a few things better, but the real thing is, with these conditions playing during the night and with the feeling of the ball here, it’s so difficult to have chances against him playing like this.”

He also joked about the incident with a fan during the match.

“I found a new coach today, too. I don’t know where he is but I think he is traveling with me to Australia tonight.”