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Monday, July 15, 2024
Monday July 15, 2024
Monday July 15, 2024

Djokovic triumphs over Musetti to secure quarterfinal spot in Monte-Carlo

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Novak Djokovic avenges previous loss to Lorenzo Musetti, advancing to the quarterfinals of the Rolex Monte-Carlo masters

In a thrilling rematch at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, Novak Djokovic overcame Lorenzo Musetti to reach the quarterfinals, avenging his defeat from last year. Despite not playing at his peak, the Serbian star managed to outlast Musetti in a gripping match, winning 7-5, 6-3.

Djokovic’s victory was marked by a critical moment of regained momentum during the first set when he capitalized on a slight lapse in focus from Musetti. “He was the better player for those first seven games,” Djokovic acknowledged. The shift occurred at a pivotal juncture, with Musetti leading and appearing poised to dominate. However, Djokovic’s resilience shone through as he seized control to close the set.

The world number one’s performance on the clay court was a testament to his strategic prowess and mental toughness. Clay courts, known for their unpredictability, played into Djokovic’s hands as he navigated the challenges posed by Musetti’s dynamic play.

This match was Djokovic’s first since parting ways with his former coach, Goran Ivanisevic, and it appeared that the change had a profound impact on his game. With new coach Nenad Zimonjic supporting him from the sidelines, Djokovic displayed moments of frustration but ultimately showcased his enduring skill and determination.

Musetti, known for his creative court craft, initially posed significant challenges to Djokovic. Nevertheless, the Serbian’s strategic breaks in the 12th game of the first set and his intensified play in the second set were enough to dismantle Musetti’s early advantage.

Reflecting on the match, Djokovic expressed satisfaction with his performance against a “very talented player.” He admitted to concerns about repeating last year’s scenario when he lost a significant lead to Musetti. “I must say it was in the back of my mind,” he shared, relieved to have changed the course this time around.

Djokovic will next face Alex de Minaur, following the Australian’s victory over fellow countryman Alexei Popyrin. De Minaur’s win made him the first Australian to reach the quarterfinals in Monte-Carlo since 1999, setting the stage for an intriguing matchup with Djokovic.

As a two-time champion in Monte-Carlo and a 98-time tour-level champion, Djokovic is still on the hunt for his first trophy of the season. His best showing this year was a semifinal appearance at the Australian Open. The upcoming quarterfinal offers him a chance to edge closer to a much-anticipated 99th title.

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