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Novak Djokovic says French Open the 'hardest title to win' ahead of Rafael Nadal clash

Novak Djokovic with French Open title

Novak Djokovic says the French Open is the most difficult Grand Slam to win for him as he prepares to renew his rivalry with Rafael Nadal.

Nadal has all but monopolised the men's French Open title during his career and is going for a 14th title this time around.

Djokovic has won it twice himself, though, with him beating Nadal last season in the semi-finals.

The Serbian is the only man in history to beat Nadal more than once at the French Open, and he will be hoping for more success when they meet in the quarter-final on Tuesday.

“It took me years and years to win the title here," Djokovic said.

“Of course I had some big heartbreaks on the court here, many finals lost and semi-finals. Thrilling marathon matches, mostly against Rafa prior to 2016.

“Of course it was very special, very emotional to clinch that title in ’16. It was a huge relief more than anything, really.

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“[After 2016], I was still continuing to play consistently well here.

“Then luckily I got another title last year. Somehow, winning a title here is always probably the hardest of any Slam for me.

“Last year the second week that I had here was just probably the toughest four matches, toughest seven days I had to win any Slam in my career.”

Should Novak Djokovic win the French Open this year, he will draw level with Rafael Nadal on a record 21 career majors.

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