Jo-Wilfried Tsonga recalls losing to Novak Djokovic in his lone Grand Slam final

Tsonga made his first final and lone Grand Slam final at the 2008 Australian Open.

by Dzevad Mesic
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga recalls losing to Novak Djokovic in his lone Grand Slam final

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga revealed the 2008 Australian Open final defeat against Novak Djokovic stayed for a long time on his mind as he was searching for an answer why did he lose that match and then beat the Serb in their next five matches.

In the 2008 Australian Open final, Tsonga made a positive start as he won the first set before Djokovic stormed back to win 4-6 6-4 6-3 7-6 (2). Tsonga then beat Djokovic in their next five meetings but never again played in a Grand Slam final.

"But this final served me well and helped me. The match, the experience. After that, I'm going to win the Masters 1000 in Bercy at the end of the year. I'm beating Djokovic that week, by the way. The problem is that I really analysed this final the proper way too late.

They tell you it's the technical, physical, mental side. But by analysing every point, hearing things from the outside, you end up getting bogged down. Sometimes things are much simpler than that. My whole career I've been asking myself why.

Why did I lose that final when I beat him five times in a row after that? What happened? You never stop thinking. You try, you fall down, you get up, you move on, it's part of a player's career. So this final is part of mine," Tsonga wrote for Eurosport.

Tsonga had more heartbreaking defeats against Djokovic

In the summer of 2011, Tsonga reached the Wimbledon semifinal before losing to Djokovic in four sets. The following year, Tsonga missed out on four match points against Djokovic in their 2012 French Open quarterfinal meeting.

After the 2008 Australian Open final, Tsonga won five in a row against Djokovic and took a 5-1 lead in their head-to-head. But after those five wins, Tsonga didn't really enjoy much success against Djokovic for the remainder of his career. In the end, Djokovic completely overturned their head-to-head and finished with a 17-6 record against Tsonga.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga Novak Djokovic Australian Open