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How Novak Djokovic Hit Back at Rafael Nadal After Spaniard’s Bold Jannik Sinner Prediction Against Him at Monte Carlo Masters 2021

Aravind Sekhar
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How Novak Djokovic Hit Back at Rafael Nadal After Backing Jannik Sinner in Monte Carlo Masters 2021

The Monte Carlo Masters 2024 will see the top stars of the game fight the battles on the red dirt. While Jannik Sinner is in good form, Novak Djokovic is seeking to win his first title of the year. Joining Djokovic and Sinner will be Rafael Nadal, who will enter the event through his protected ranking. Interestingly, Nadal had shown his favoritism for Sinner at Monte Carlo in 2021 when the Italian was to take on Djokovic in the second round.

The Spaniard has been backing up Sinner ever since. Nadal believed Sinner would come out firing from all ends against Djokovic despite the Serb being the clear favorite to win. In a press conference during that tournament, the 11-time Monte Carlo Masters champion wrongly predicted Djokovic would have a tough battle against his younger rival.

“For Jannik, I’m sure he’s focused on winning the first match. If he plays against Novak, is of course a tough match for Jannik, probably a tough match for Novak, too, no? But Novak came here after winning another slam… He will be ready, no? But let’s see. I don’t know. I can’t have a clear opinion on that. Of course, going to be a tough battle if that happens,” Nadal was quoted as saying back then.

The World No.1 hit back at Nadal’s comments without uttering a word, courtesy his performance against Sinner in the second round at the Monte Carlo Masters. Djokovic defeated Sinner 6-4, 6-2 in a match that lasted for 90 minutes.

It was the first meeting between the players. Meanwhile, Sinner’s defeat backfired on Nadal’s statements earlier.

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The former World No.1 might have been hoping to play mind games before the match, but it clearly did not affect Djokovic on the court. Instead, it made him even more determined to send a message back to Nadal. A lot has changed in the past three seasons on the tour as there has been a seismic shift in the rankings.

Jannik Sinner and Novak Djokovic gearing up for potential rematch at the Monte Carlo Masters

The Monte Carlo Masters marks the first clay court event in the Masters 1000 events each year. After winning the Australian Open and recently, the Miami Open as well, Sinner will aim to carry on his hard court momentum into clay courts. 

Sinner, with his new ranking of No.2 in the world, is set to be the second seed at the Monte Carlo Masters. Djokovic being the top seed could mean a rematch of the top two seeded players in the final this year. Sinner has already beaten the 36-year-old at the Australian Open semi-final and can secure the fourth win of his career over Djokovic.

The pair has played seven matches on the ATP Tour on head-to-head, with Sinner winning 3 out of their last 4 meetings. If they meet in the final at Monte Carlo Masters, it will be their second meeting on clay courts. Sinner could get enough support from the stands as he prepares himself for his fourth consecutive appearance at Monte Carlo.

Post Edited By:Dhruv Rupani

About the author

Aravind Sekhar

Aravind Sekhar

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Aravind Sekhar is a Tennis Journalist at The SportsRush. He has been following Tennis since 2010. While not following the sport online, he plays the game and works on improving his one handed backhand. He has completed his Masters in Applied Sociology. Apart from writing, he is passionate about picking up interesting statistics on players from the WTA and ATP tours.

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