Novak Djokovic On First Holger Rune Test: 'It Was A Great Battle'

‘It was a great battle’


Novak Djokovic and Holger Rune will meet in the final of the Paris Masters on Sunday. The 35-year-old looks for his 39th Masters 1000 crown as a teenager plays in his first final at this level after four straight top-10 wins!

Novak and Rune have had a couple of training sessions in Monte Carlo and know each other well. In addition, they have already played one match on Tour in 2021, meeting in the first round of the US Open. Speaking about that match, Djokovic said it was a great battle, expecting another tough one against a talented youngster in Paris.

Novak kicked off his career on the Grand Slam schedule with a 6-1, 6-7, 6-2, 6-1 win over an 18-year-old Dane. Rune had won back-to-back Challenger titles a few weeks earlier, cracking the top 150 and making it through three qualifying rounds in New York.

The young gun gave it his all against the best player in the world. He won the second set in the tiebreak before disappearing from the court due to cramps, a frequent problem at that stage of his career. Novak earned his 22nd consecutive Major win that year with 55 game winners and 30 unforced errors, dealing with Rune and the crowd at Arthur Ashe Stadium and overcoming the first hurdle on the road to tennis glory.

Novak Djokovic defeated Holger Rune in four sets at the US Open 2021.

The Serb fired 17 aces and faced just three break points, losing serve twice. He converted eight of 14 break point opportunities to advance to the second round and improve his US Open R1 score to 16-0!

The young gun netted a forehand in the second game of the encounter to experience an instant break. Djokovic produced four good holds, scoring the second break at 4-1 and holding with an ace in the next for 6-1 in no time. Holger broke at love in the second game of the second set with a forehand down the line winner and forged a 3-0 lead.

Novak bounced back and claimed four games in a row to put himself in front. world no. 1 double faulted in game eight to lose the lead, and the set went to a tie break. Rune took the first four points to build a big lead.

The Dane won it 7-5 with a service winner to get a huge boost ahead of set number three. Starting fresh, Novak served well and broke at 15 in game four when Holger hit a long forehand. Rune received a leg massage before the eighth game when Djokovic broke serve after a double fault from the youngster.

Marching towards the finish line, the Serb held strong behind the opening shot in the fourth set and produced two breaks that put him on top. Holger dropped serve in games two and four, and Novak held love at 5-1 to surge to the top in style.

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