When Novak Djokovic joined Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer in 'Club 80'



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When Novak Djokovic joined Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer in 'Club 80'

With 86 ATP titles, Novak Djokovic is the fifth most successful player in the Open era. Novak secured five titles in 2021, including three Majors and the Masters 1000 event in Paris in the closing stages. The Serb is yet to lift a trophy in 2022, playing only one tournament in Dubai and hoping to change that next week in Monte Carlo, where he stands as the top seed.

Novak's 80th ATP title came in August 2020 in New York, when he claimed the Cincinnati Masters a week before the US Open. Thus, Djokovic had stayed undefeated in 2020, winning all 23 matches and gathering a boost ahead of the season's second Major.

It was Novak's first tournament after the coronavirus break, and he defeated five rivals to secure the 35th Masters 1000 trophy. Djokovic followed Jimmy Connors, Ivan Lendl, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal as the fifth player with 80 ATP titles.

Novak had to dig deep in the semi-final against Roberto Bautista Agut. The Serb scored a late break at 5-6 in the decider and claimed the tie break 7-0 to find himself in the 51st Masters 1000 final. Djokovic toppled Milos Raonic 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 in two hours to secure the second Career Golden Masters!

Competing in his fourth Masters 1000 final and chasing the first title, Milos gave his best to remain in touch with the better-ranked opponent. Raonic sought the first victory over Djokovic in 11 encounters, building an early advantage in the decider but finishing on the losing side.

The Canadian had 26 winners and 25 unforced errors, beating Djokovic in the shortest exchanges but losing ground in the more advanced ones. Milos was the only player on the court in the opening set, taking 27 out of 41 points and delivering two breaks for a commanding 6-1.

Novak could not find the rhythm, struggling physically and landing 47% of the first serve in.

Novak Djokovic secured the 80th ATP title in Cincinnati 2020.

He gave away almost 60% of the points in his games to push the Canadian in front.

Raonic held at 30 in the first game with a forehand winner, missed a break chance in the next one but secured a break two games later to open a 3-1 gap. Milos landed a forehand down the line winner to confirm the advantage and build a 4-1 lead.

He secured another break in game six following Novak's double fault and brought the opener home with an ace for 6-1 after 30 minutes. Raising his level, Djokovic recovered his shots and lost only eight points in five service games in set number two.

He forced Raonic to repeat those numbers if he wanted to reach a tie break. Milos wasted a game point at 2-3 and lost serve following Novak's sharp backhand. Djokovic held at love to open a 5-2 gap and clinched the set after Raonic's forehand error at 5-3.

Starting all over, Milos held at love in the decider's first game and grabbed a break at 15 that sent him 2-0 up. As it turned out, it was the last positive moment for Raonic in the title clash. The Serb claimed 16 of the following 20 points, delivered breaks in games three and five and held at 15 for a 4-2 advantage.

Serving for the title at 5-4, Djokovic saved a break chance when Raonic netted an easy forehand and forced his opponent's error to claim the trophy and remain undefeated in 2020.