Novak Djokovic after beating Rafael Nadal: 'I'm thinking about No. 1'

“I’m Thinking About No. 1”

After a breakthrough in 2007, Novak Djokovic became a Major champion in Melbourne in early 2008. Two months later, Novak advanced to the Indian Wells final 28 minutes ago after a dominant 6-3, 6-2 triumph over Rafael Nadal in an hour and a half.

It was their ninth meeting on the tour and the third win for the Serb, who lost 14 points in nine service games and broke once. Novak grabbed half of the return points and delivered four breaks from seven opportunities, enough to advance to the final.

Djokovic had more winners and fewer unforced errors. He forced more errors from Nadal’s racquet and controlled the pace to go miles ahead of the Spaniard in the quickest changes by up to four strokes. Novak ended the opening game with a service winner and Rafa held at 1-1.

In his worst service game, the Serb sprayed a forehand error in game three and conceded a break to go 2-1 down. However, Nadal only stayed ahead for a few minutes. He hit a forehand in game four, losing the advantage and momentum.

Novak held at love in the seventh game and grabbed another break in the next after a lucky net line that put him 5-3 ahead. World No. 3 landed an ace down the T-line in the ninth game to end the opener and give themselves a boost ahead of set two.

Novak Djokovic defeated Rafael Nadal in straight sets in Indian Wells in 2008.

The Spaniard received a medical time-out for a toenail on his left foot and held with an ace in the opening game of the second set. The defending champion brought the third game home at 15 and squandered a break chance in the next to keep Novak on the positive side.

The Serb grabbed a break in game five after the Spaniard’s loose forehand and cemented it with an ace for a 4-2 lead. Nadal gave serve again in game seven when his drop shot missed the net and continued to fall.

Djokovic sealed the deal with a service winner minutes later to celebrate a mighty win and advance to the final. Novak was delighted with his performance, feeling good about the progress and set his eyes on the ATP throne.

“I played well and tactically smart. I knew I had to be aggressive, take control and take my shots, which I did. The turning point was the break at 4-3 in the first set when I got a bit of luck If we look at the stats, I played at a high level and my serve worked like a charm.

I get more confident with every win. I’ve achieved a lot at 20 and people consider me one of the best players in the world. That’s why I have to stay focused and go step by step. I’m also thinking about becoming world number 1.

1. It’s getting closer, but I don’t want to go too fast and make some mistakes. After an incredible start I need to be consistent for the rest of the season and play more finals. Last year I played most of the games on the tour and got some big wins that gave me confidence,” said Novak Djokovic.

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