Novak Djokovic is ‘a wall’, according to tennis legend Martina Navratilova ahead of his Rome Masters final against Rafael Nadal.
The world number one hasn’t had the easiest run to his 11th Rome Final, having to finish his quarter-final and a three-set semi-final on the same day due to rain delays.
It looked like the Serbian my be heading out of the tournament on Friday when rain stopped his match with Stefanos Tsitsipas when he was a set and a break down.
When they returned the following day, Djokovic turned the second set around but had a battle in the third set with both players breaking each others serves, to finally secure the win 4-6, 7-5, 7-5.
Just a few hours later, he met Lorenzo Sonego and although he won the first set quickly, the Italian staged a comeback in front of a cheering home crowd forcing a third set which Djokovic went on to win 6-3, 6-7, 6-2.
Martina Navratilova says these wins show the championship mentality of the world number one.
“[Djokovic] finds a way to win,” Navratilova told Amazon Prime Video. “Even when he’s not that sharp or an opponent plays extremely well.
“He is a wall, it’s really frustrating to play against him because you feel like you’re beating yourself up.
“You’re doing everything right and you still can’t break through his defences, and then he’s got pretty good offence as well.
“But that’s the mark of a champion, finding ways to win when…the crowd is against you, when the opponent’s playing out of their mind, but you still somehow, you just refuse to lose. Basically he refuses to lose.”
Djokovic will now play Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s final and if he wins it will be sixth Rome Masters crown.
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