- French Open, men's final
Double trouble ends Djokovic's dream of the 'Tiger Slam'
Making the same mistakes
Going into Sunday's contest, Novak Djokovic had lost all ten of the matches on clay against Rafael Nadal where he had dropped the opening set. Considering all that, being broken in both of his first two service games (including the very first game of the match) probably wasn't in his gameplan...
Clay king made to look like a novice
During a period in the third set Novak Djokovic won eight games in a row against Nadal, who looked temporarily like he had never even seen the surface before. It was a remarkable spell of play from the Serbian, who was desperate to keep his 'Tiger Slam' dream alive.
An elite club
Speaking of eight, when Djokovic wrapped up the third set he became just the eighth person ever to win a set against Nadal at Roland Garros. The rest of that illustrious club: Robin Soderling (who beat him), Roger Federer, John Isner, Leyton Hewitt, Mariano Puerta, Paul-Henri Mathieu and Sebastien Grosjean.
Trailing by a break of serve in the fourth set when play resumed on Monday, Nadal burst out of the blocks by breaking straight back, but not without a little luck. The ball bounced off the top of the net and dropped, and although Djokovic made the shot, he left the court wide open and Nadal made no mistake as he fizzed a backhand past to seal the break.
In the end, double faults at inopportune times cost Djokovic dearly. A double fault on break point was the difference as Nadal took the opening set, before he did exactly the same thing once again to start off the second stanza.
Then, when the players returned on Monday, a double fault on championship point handed the tournament to Nadal. Three crucial errors that cost the Serbian his chance at the 'Tiger Slam'.