Novak Djokovic had defeated his rival Rafael Nadal at one point in their rivalry seven straight times. But Nadal has jumped on the Serb recently winning five of their last six including Saturday night’s thriller at the Rogers Cup Montreal.
Djokovic’s was asked Tuesday at the Western & Southern if anything had changed in Rafa’s game.
“He became more aggressive,” Djokovic said. “That’s where I felt it. Especially on the return in Montreal he was coming closer to the line and he was picking up the ball quite fast.
“So that was different probably comparing to our last matches on hard court. But it was still a close one. It was quite fast conditions in Montreal, so there were not many long rallies and everything was happening quite quickly.”
Djokovic is thought to be the better returner with a better serve, but in Saturday’s match Rafa won more points on serve and against serve than Novak.
Nadal now leads Novak 21-15 in this rivalry. Rafa is also ahead in the 2013 points race.
“2011 I was winning most of them; now he’s winning,” added Djokovic. “It’s a course of life, you know. You can’t always be winning the matches. You can’t always be the one that is going to prevail in the important moments. It’s mental. It’s a matter of confidence also. Sometimes you manage to go for the shot that usually you wouldn’t and sometimes it works; sometimes it doesn’t for you. I guess that makes a difference.”
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