He’s Novak Djokovic And Lately He’s Been Unbeatable
by Tom Gainey | October 17th, 2015, 10:21 am
  • 70 Comments

Novak Djokovic improved his most recent win streak to 16 straight matches after trouncing his longtime rival Andy Murray 61, 63 to reach the Shanghai Masters final, where he will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

“It’s the best match of the tournament at the right time against a player who was in form and one of my biggest rivals,” Djokovic said. “He’s a player I lost to a couple months ago in the Montreal final. Obviously there was a lot at stake. Whenever we play against each other, it’s always exciting. It’s always a huge challenge. But I was ready. I came in from the very first point with the right intensity, played great, on a very high level.

“I had a very high first-serve percentage throughout the entire match. He had a very low one. I think that also made a difference in terms of the scoreline.”

Djokovic’s numbers have been staggering of late. In addition to winning his last 16, he’s also won 20 straight sets and in the last 18 sets he’s played only Bernard Tomic yesterday has been able to win more than three games!

The win over Murray lifts Novak’s career mark against the Scot to 20-9 having won nine of their last 10 matches (11 of their last 12 on the hardcourts).

Djokovic also becomes the only player to have 20 or more wins against the trio of Roger Federer (21-21), Rafael Nadal (22-23) and Murray (20-9).

Djokovic has not only been dominant against those three, but against the entire Top 10 in recent years. After beating Murray, Djokovic is now 24-4 vs Top 10 players in 2015.

And he has more titles (28) than losses (25) on hard courts since the start of 2011.

He also loves playing in China where he’s now won 37 of his last 38 matches (6 titles).

Tomorrow he will contest his 13th straight tournament final (Federer once reached 17 straight in 2005) against Tsonga seeking a third Shanghai title. It’s the 20th meeting between the two with Djokovic winning 13. But Tsonga won their last showdown in Canada 2014.


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70 Comments for He’s Novak Djokovic And Lately He’s Been Unbeatable

FedExpress Says:

only an aging Fed can still give nole trouble. what a tour.


Margot Says:

But back in the day Fed was doing that till Rafa came along and then it was Fedal till Nole came along. Nothing new really.
And Nole fans must surely enjoy this long, very, very long, moment in the sun, because that too will end.


roy Says:

@fedexpress
fed gives him trouble by building pressure with one of the best service games on tour, that’s all.

karlovic beat novak this year for the same reason. anderson was up 2 sets at wimbledon for same reason.

nadal/murray have weak service compared to federer and are more returner based, thus novak’s superior service and equal or better returning makes these matchups a nightmare for them. they end up in dogfights on too many service points.


jane Says:

i agree roy. fed’s serving is a huge factor in their match up.


Wog Boy Says:

Looks like someone who has beaten Rafa 13 (thirteen) times in the finals, which is a record, I presume, no?
After Nole lost first five finals to Rafa, he 13:4 in the finals since 2011, pretty comprehensive, no?


Wog Boy Says:

Time for bed, 2:30am, I hope I am going to wake up with another good news, that Aussies beat Scotlan in th QF of RWC.
BTW, where is GG, we offered her three honorary citizenships, Scotish, Welsh and Aussie one since England bombed out of the RWC? GG, safer bet is Aussie, take it while is on offer, we might withdraw offer at any time without notice..


Gypsy Gal Says:

Congrats Novak and fans he just seems to go from strength to stength,i will say congrats on another Masters title,as he cant see Mr Sexy Smile beating Mr Unbeatable,looking like he will go unbeaten till the end of the year now,the tennis landscape looks bleak for fans of all other players,i will take some comfort in the knowledge that Rafa seems to be getting his grove back,every cloud and all….


Gypsy Gal Says:

Wogboy ive not seen either match as ive been at work,only saw the end result on teletext,the irony is im more happier with Rafas form this week even with this loss,its the Murray defeat im more dissapointed with,i will take the Scottish citizenship lol as i am half Scottish anyway thanks,been a Pagan i watched a documentry the other night on some witch trials that happened in Scotland centuries ago,suspected witches been burned at the stake amongst other cruel tortures eek,CHEERS AND ENJOY THE FINAL….


Kimberly Says:

13-4 in finals since 2011. I would be curious to know their record in Grand slams post 2011. I bet not as skewed?


mat4 Says:

It’s 4-4 in slams, Kimberly, 3-3 in finals.


brando Says:

@Kimberly: since 2011? 4-2 to rafa. Novak edged him in AO and beat rafas shadow in RG this year.


brando Says:

Novaks too good. Guys like arnie in terminator: the job gets done. Clinically.


brando Says:

Lmfao @ b-tchfest between Jane and giles. Popcorn worthy contest, lol.


chris ford1 Says:

Props to Novak, Rafa, Jo Tsonga, and *cringing a bit* – Bernard Tomic.

Djoko – what more can anyone say??

Rafa – Nadal’s play and his confidence got a big boost the way he played in Shanghai. Lost a close one to Tsonga, but is playing better and better in what is traditionally his worst part of the Tour period,

Jo Tsonga – The talented and likable Jo showed huge heart and desire in his winning battle with Rafa. He has a chance against Nole, not much of one, but a chance. But another win over Nadal is a nice highlight in a fine career.

Tomic – Admit it, the guy showed his talent with his high level of play in the 1st set he played with Djokovic. Still young, still a chance he can get his shit together and make Top 10.


brando Says:

@CF1: agree about jo. Wanted rafael to win and was pleased with his performance but seeing jo win made me smile. He’s like delpo: no matter when he beats your fav, you can’t help but pleased for the guy. Hope Ali doesn’t get battered tomorrow and steals a set. Can’t see the win happening at all.


chris ford1 Says:

Downarrows to Fed and Andy for Shanghai. Some may give McEnroe a downarrow.

Fed had another of his early exits.

Andy, who may challenge Novak for #1 sometime down the road, just had another brutal beatdown put on him by his rival. Showed a reversion to negativity, self abuse (no, not that sort of self-abuse!!), and cursing out his box and the world in general. Will Murray ever turn the corner on his mental weakness? Even if he made the semis, this was a very bad occasion for him. But each tournament is a new opportunity, and if Andy leads GB to the Davis Cup trophy it will still be a good year for him.

McEnroe? – Novak will have 169 weeks as #1 next week. Passing John in Paris to be 5th on the list of most weeks as #1 in a career. But no downarrow from me, as Mac played every year of that career in a highly competitive era. (my contribution to setting up a strawman. )


J-Kath Says:

Right GG – I’ve checked with Nicola and she’s agreed that as of now you are a most welcome honorary member of Scotland’s Sporting Fans.


Daniel Says:

Djoko FH cross court is sublime as if late. If you comer how he played in AO and RG finals to now he is going for the lines more and going to define points. Plus, any chance he puts his face right on the net and made a lot of volley winners today.

Tsonga is playing aggressive button several games he was saved by his serve. Nadal made one crucial FH flat mistake today at 3-4 15-30 Tsonga serving. That could have set double break point for him and he could have served the match. Instead he missed and Tsonga fired some serves. Also, the game he was broken he served a bunch of second serves.

Think Djoko will have an easier time tomorrow. And will need a great performance to beat him only a few could deliver.

Berdych, Ferrer, Wawa, Kei are not playing great and Nadal is still finding his form. After today’s performance maybe only Fed in London can have a chance and that depending on form.
Djoko looks set to win 10 titles this year, if not 11. Number 9 coming tomorrow and 25th Masters, 90% sure about it. Can’t see his form just dropping after easy fast matches.


mat4 Says:

I don’t remember that anybody put an asterisk on Rafa’s victories over Novak when Novak changed his racquet or his serve motion, and played like a shadow of the player he was in 2007 or 2008…

Of 8 matches they played in slams, 4 were on Rafa’s favourite surface, one was on grass, three on hard.

Nobody here mentions that the balls for RG are made by Babolat, and are changed after 2011 to slow the game even more (it can be checked, btw).

Nobody mentions that Rafa avoided Novak on grass and hard in slams from 2008 to, at least, the A0 2011, 10 slams in a row.

So, please…


Wog Boy Says:

“@Kimberly: since 2011? 4-2 to rafa. Novak edged him in AO and beat rafas shadow in RG this year.”

You somehow forgot to include Wimbledon 2011 and USO 2011, that comes to 4:4, (3:3 in finala), besides, it was obvious who my post was for, for that lovely poster who is yet to come out of the closet….as the biggest Nole fan..


Wog Boy Says:

Margot,
My commiserations for Wales loss last night, you really didn’t have a good day:( I didn’t have a horse in that race though I was leaning towards Wales because of you but Southafricans edged you out. My problem with Wales is when ever I hear about Wales it brings me memories on the worst Prime Minister in Australia since I arrived here, she was kicked out of the office by her own party (Labor party), she was Welsh born and her name is Julia Gillard, first female Prime Ministar in Australia.


brando Says:

Nah I took it as post 2011, hence 4-2. Including, of course, 4-4. Career? Obviously is a different scoreline. But that’s a different conversation all together: career. As it is: this is 2015, and congratulations to Novak on his year. Just seen the highlights of his match v Andy and to be honest: it was kinda like rafa v stan. One guy is on, focused and the other guy Wilts away after awhile. Andy said post match he performed badly but to be honest: he’s been on tour for 10 years now. 10 years. And he still throws in these meltdown matches. When he looks back at his career and thinks “why didn’t I win as much as fedal, Novak?” He’ll realize if he’s honest with himself he didn’t lack in ability or opportunities: just mentally he’s so poor. So, so many slams over the years he’s had chances to win that the others (fedal, novak) cash in but Andy never really did. And that really is the difference between legends and very good players: legends cash in, very good ones do not. Andy needs to win atleast one slam next year and really 2 since otherwise his career will be a failure considering the talent he was working with. It’s all excuses blaming competition when you are that talented and had all the chances. I mean 8 grand slam finals played, 14 grand slam semi finals and you bring home ONLY 2 slams: :-(!


Rick Says:

Warinka a nightmare for Nole, his backhand
just kill off Soderling 2.


Rick Says:

Murray has to get back with Lendl, he won Wimbledon, US Open and the Olympics with his help.


django Says:

Rick, I don’t think lendl would agree to that.


mat4 Says:

WB:

At least, Wales fought well. We were steam-rolled.


Margot Says:

@Wog Boy
Thank you darling x. I’m gutted about Wales but as soon as Dan went off, I knew we were doomed. He has been immense and the sight of him fuming on the bench when the Boks scored that try, said it all.
Re your PM sorry we sent you that turkey! ;)
I know you don’t like Atomic but I think he’s very talented and I’m glad he’s rising in the rankings. There was a funny comment I read: seems he’s very grateful to Nick because he’s no longer the “bad boy” of Aussie tennis!
@mat 4
The ABs were simply too jaw droppingly good. I love Les Bleus and when they are on song, nothing like them. I think SA has been an awful coach and I’m glad he’s going.
Congrats to Nole again. He too is jaw droppingly good.
@CF1
I’m sick of this negative energy of Andy’s too. He might get it more under control, but doubt if it’ll ever go away now. :(


Wog Boy Says:

mat4,
Yes, I’ve seen the result, but Kiwis are too good any way, they are my favorites to win the cup, in the last ten years Australia managed to win only handful of games against Kiwis, H2H is something like 25:5 for Kiwis, they are just too good.


Wog Boy Says:

Margot,
It is true that I don’t like Tomic, but as I said on the other thread he produced really great and mature game that night and pushed Nole really hard (I was really worried since Nole couldn’t read his serve). I guess he was little bit tired too since he spent three ttimes more time on Shanghai court compare to Nole and finished his match against Gasque after midnight, so he had about 18 hours to recover, not really enough.


mat4 Says:

@Margot:

I stopped watching a lot of sports au fil du temps. Especially team sports — it’s so ugly today, so soulless… Recent revelations about the atmosphere in the heart of the French football team shocked me. I am still convinced that Zidane did what he did in the final 2006 on purpose.

A sense of cohesion has been lost. A sense of pride too. I can’t understand that we have a professional league, that our players play every year with the best teams in the world, and then loses the way it did, playing under the national flag. To fight and lose, OK, but to be humiliated in such a manner…

But the problem is deeper than that — today, one doesn’t know what it means to be French.

And it’s not only about France. I just read an article where a ONG politician declared — about Novak’s statement that the Serbian people had to recover his identity — that Novak was deluded… Since I remember well what the Serbs were 25 years ago — I believe that Novak is right.

That’s the reason why I like so much VVP. He gave his people its honour, its dignity, its roots back, and most important, its identity.


mat4 Says:

@WB:

Come on, be serious. I understand that the Serbian team dominates in waterpolo: Serbs are the tallest people on earth, their team averages 198 when our boys were 182 cm. In a sport where strength is so important, OK.

But to lose in such a manner against a nation that has 4,5 millions inhabitants, less than we have players?

It’s better not to think about that.


Wog Boy Says:

mat4,

But they have Maori people whose body proportions and atitude perfectly suits ragby, they are simply born to play rugby, same as all Polyneisian people, they are plesure to watch, whether it is union or league.


Wog Boy Says:

mat4,
Sorry for ignorance, but what is ONG?


mat4 Says:

“organisations non-gouvernementales” — sorry, in English it’s NGO.


Wog Boy Says:

mat4,

This is what you are staring at before every game with Kiwis, doesn’t really give you sense of safety:

http://youtu.be/IqfHv9FOpXw


J-Kath Says:

WogBoy – I don’t like Tomic either – I don’t care whether he plays superb, good or bad tennis – I don’t care who he fights with or parties with – and it has nothing to do with nationality – I must have met him in a previous life – as there is no real logic behind it.

I’m setting mysef up for a deluge of justified abuse from his fans — and they are entitled.


mat4 Says:

WB:

I don’t have to watch the link to know it’s the haka. It’s just one reason more to beat the AB.


Margot Says:

Lol Kat, how boring it would be if we all liked the same things! No abuse coming your way from me.
I don’t really dislike players as people, after all I don’t know them personally, I just dislike the way they play. eg Isner, who seems an absolute sweetie but….
@mat4
That’s so interesting what you are saying about identity. It is so easy to be Welsh and proud with a very clear identity all bound up with a strong sense of belonging. Also, we have no imperialistic past for a start which helps, and we have a great big, powerful neighbour whom we adore to beat at rugby. Small ambitions you see, keeps us in our place.
@Wog Boy
If Scotland can’t win, and no they can’t, COME ON the Aussies!


Margot Says:

Also mat4, doesn’t France have really strong regions? I know lots of players ply their trade in France. I think 1/2p plays for Toulouse? And doesn’t this count against some sort of “national” cohesion? Obviously I don’t just mean for the French rugby team.


mat4 Says:

No, Margot, it’s not about that. In France, regionalisms and communautarisms didn’t exist until recently. Corse and Brittany were a bit apart, but nonetheless, it was the state of the French citizens.

Rugby is very popular in the South of France, though.


Okiegal Says:

Nole…..beast mode!! Is there anyone out there that can beat him?? I don’t think so. At the rate he’s going atm, watch out 14 and 17! Is it possible?
He is making mince meat out of everybody he goes up against. His fans must be busting their buttons and rightfully do. Congratulations to all of his fans! Even though Rafa didn’t make the finals, I am hopeful he is slowly but surely making his way back. He looked much better this week, but Novak look like Superman!!


J-Kath Says:

Margot: There’s one other player who also gives me the wrong sort of goose-pimples – he’s so well known I can’t even remember his name.

Just heard Scotland beat Australia 3 years ago in Newcastle, Australia – so I’m keeping my hopes up.
Oh just listen to that music – I’m off, cheeriebye.
K


django Says:

Okiegal
Hope you are doing ok. Sending lots of energy, prayers your way.


courbon Says:

Hi Oki, nice to see you posting!
Your boy was so much better then couple of months ago, so lots of positives for Nadal fans…yeap, Novak is bit of a Clark Kent at the moment…


Okiegal Says:

@django…..Thanks, you are a real sweetheart….appreciate the kind words of encouragement. My son and his wife stayed with me three nights in a row. The funeral was Saturday. Last night I told them to go home and sleep in their own beds that I have to jump this fence sooner or later. I was tired from many nights of no sleep. I went to bed early and went right to sleep and got up early and went to church. I made it OK.

@Courbon…..I was more excited regarding Rafa and the Asian swing. He is looking better, I’m happy to say. Maybe he’s gaining some of his confidence back.
I haven’t been posting much….and you’ve missed me!! That makes me feel good…..Thanks! Slowly but surely things will get back to normal, but I am feeling the void in my life. But I’m a strong willed, hard headed Oklahoma female…
I’ll be OK! Thanks again……Okiegal


Gypsy Gal Says:

Okie its lovely to see you here,i dont know what to say to make you feel better,only with family and friends around you they will always be a great support,as for tennis-x dont be a stranger,as we all love having you around,anyway seems Rafa is playing better,hope it continues,TAKE CARE MY DEAR ETHEREAL FRIEND XX…. ;)….


courbon Says:

Oki,
Off course I missed you-I like straight talking people and good natured. You are one.Your sense of humor and spirit, in your situation, is truly admirable, brave and inspiring.And I mean it.
( I does not feel natural to me to talk to strangers so openly, but your opened your heart to all of us, it only feels right to give same back )


J-Kath Says:

See You Okiegal – Take a lot of care – it needs time to recover – seems a strange thing to say, but let the tears flow – they need to come out.


Gypsy Gal Says:

Courbon your post is making me cry :(….


RZ Says:

Djokovic’s 2015 will probably go down as the single greatest season for a male player in the Open Era. He’s already outdone his 2011, which was regarded as one of the top 3 calendar years. His 2011 didn’t finish strongly which is why most commentators/analysts didn’t pick it as the single strongest season. But it looks like Djoker has no intention of letting up in 2015.


courbon Says:

Gypsy, you are big softy…Good night, sweet dreams, speak to you soon


Gypsy Gal Says:

Courbon yeah you too,from the other thread,im a lover not a fighter,make love not war….


Gypsy Gal Says:

I am a big softie….


Gypsy Gal Says:

J-Kath you are too :(….


courbon Says:

No, no…lets make war and then make love.You got it wrong! (-:
Now, I’m definetelly going to bed.Night, night


elina Says:

You guys, when rankings come out tomorrow Novak sets the all time history record for most points held and biggest lead (both points wise and percentage wise) of all time.

He will be the first player to hold 80% of possible points won, 21,000 being the max!

Better than Roger ever did.

Incredible in this era of tennis.


Gypsy Gal Says:

He will have a hell of alot to defend next year,he will have his work cut out that is for sure….


elina Says:

I’m not sure why that matters? Everybody starts each year with zero points in the race.

In other words, he doesn’t have to defend all of those points and still finish No. 1. He can finish No. 1 and drop 4-5000 points potentially.


Wog Boy Says:

What surprises me is difference in points between #1 and #2 player, more than 8.000 points, one thing is certain, Nole is setting up his own records in the book of tennis history, they are not as big as Roger’s but they are his, who would have thought so just few years back?!


Wog Boy Says:

Travis Bickle beat me for this one, he posted it on the other thread.


jane Says:

i believe he’s now mathematically guaranteed 190 weeks at #1. he can’t lose it before march next year, and i think that would be without pick up a racquet between now and then. so yeah he has a considerable cushion.

in any case, novak said he doesn’t worry about that. here’s a quote:

Carole Bouchard ‏@carole_bouchard 9h9 hours ago

Smiled at this “so Djokovic” sentence when asked abt defending all those points in 2016: “It’s not on my priority list of thinking process”.


Gypsy Gal Says:

Elina true,never thought of it that way….


jalep Says:

It’s not exactly true, GG. One ranking method in the ATP works on defending points, the other one doesn’t.

The race ranking doesn’t drop off points every Monday during a season, it adds points as they are won. And it’s basically to track for the WTF race.

The other ranking is a 52 week rolling ranking system and drops off points accumulated from the previous year calendar every Monday. It’s set up with draw seeding in mind for upcoming tournaments. That’s where defending points comes into question.

I like tracking both.

Novak is saying he doesn’t think about defending ranking points. His job is going out and playing his tennis. His tennis is his focus, the ranking, either Rankings one looks at, will follow his performances.


elina Says:

I like tracing both too but there should be no pressure to defend the highest number of points ever held by one player (including inflation).

There is a very large margin of safety.

With such a huge lead, it will be more interesting watching the start from zero race to London in the new year.


jalep Says:

http://www.atpworldtour.com/en/rankings/rankings-faq

Rankings explained — it’s a bit confusing. Davis Cup (Final), which comes after the ATP tournament calender will have points from 2015 in 2016…

And some late season ITF tournaments will be included too. Very nice of them, lord knows they need it.


jalep Says:

lol, elina. We were confusing each other a week ago. Maybe we’ll get on the same page ;)

Rafa made past Berdych. I was just a week off about it.


elina Says:

You are a tennis expert extrordinaire before your time!

Top story: Federer v Zverev, Djokovic v Anderson At ATP Finals Saturday