What do Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Andy Murray and Holger Rune have in common?



by   |  VIEW 5776

What do Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Andy Murray and Holger Rune have in common?

Novak Djokovic has played in the record-breaking 56 Masters 1000 finals since Indian Wells 2007. The Serb has stayed competitive for 15 years at the premium ATP level and claimed 38 titles, standing two in front of Rafael Nadal.

Novak is 38-18 in the Masters 1000 final, losing 15 of those matches to his greatest rivals, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Roger Federer. The mentioned trio stood alone on the list of the players who had beaten Novak in the Masters 1000 final until Alexander Zverev joined them in Rome 2017.

Karen Khachanov stunned Djokovic in the 2018 Paris Masters final, entering the list as the fifth player. Four years later, the young Dane Holger Rune added his name to the chart following a courageous victory over the Serb in Paris.

Thus, Holger became the sixth and youngest player with a win over Novak in the title matches at this level. A teenager came to Paris with three Masters 1000 triumphs under his belt.

Holger Rune is the sixth player with a win over Novak Djokovic in Masters 1000 final.

Rune survived three match points against Stan Wawrinka in the first round before facing five top-10 rivals in a row!

Holger stayed composed and toppled them all to become the first player with five top-10 wins at a single tournament! Rune ousted Hubert Hurkacz, Andrey Rublev, Carlos Alcaraz and Felix Auger-Aliassime to find himself in the title clash against a six-time champion Djokovic.

Eager to show his best tennis, Holger prevailed over Novak 3-6, 6-3, 7-5 in two hours and 33 minutes for his first Masters 1000 crown and a place in the top-10 at 19. Rune defended ten out of 12 break points, including six in the encounter's last game while serving for the title!

Novak led 3-1, 40-30 in the decider, but it was not enough to carry him over the top. Holger landed 43 winners and 33 unforced errors and outplayed Novak in the baseline exchanges. Djokovic served well in the opener, dropping five points in five service games and delivering a break in game four that led him toward 6-3.

Novak created break chances at the start of the second set that could have crushed the young opponent. Rune fended them off and scored his first break in game two for an early advantage. The young gun served well in the rest of the set and closed it 6-3 to introduce a decider.

Novak started all over and broke Holger in game four, never losing a Masters 1000 final after winning the opening set and looking eager to extend that streak! The Serb served in the next one and squandered a game point that could have pushed him 4-1 ahead.

Rune broke back with a forehand crosscourt winner and leveled the score at 3-3 on his serve a few minutes later. The youngster held after deuces in game eight for 4-4 and created a break chance in game 11 after Djokovic's loose backhand.

Novak placed a forehand wide to get broken and fall 6-5 behind. The 12th game saw a real roller coaster, as Djokovic refused to surrender. In his last push, the Serb created six break points to extend the battle and introduce a tie break.

Rune saved them with brave hitting and seized the second match point to celebrate his first Masters 1000 crown and write history books.