Novak Djokovic grabbed his fifth Rome title and with it a record 36th Masters shield after beating Diego Schwartzman 7-5, 6-3 on Monday.
Djokovic overcame a 2-break hole 0-3 in the first set against Schwartzman who was appearing in his first Masters final after impressive wins over Rafael Nadal and Denis Shapovalov.
“It was a great week, a very challenging week,” said Djokovic. “I don’t think I played my best tennis throughout the week but I found my best tennis when I needed it most. That makes me very satisfied and proud. I managed to find the fifth gear when it was needed.
“Now we move on to Paris, and I couldn’t ask for a better tournament here.”
The Serb is now 31-1 on the season with four titles and goes into the French Open just behind Rafael Nadal on the favorites list.
Djokovic also moves ahead of Nadal with 36 career Masters titles to Rafa’s 35. It was Djokovic’s first title on clay since 2019 Madrid where he beat Stefanos Tsitsipas.
The World No. 1 will be top seed at the French which begins on Sunday. Nadal will be seeded second with Dominic Thiem third.
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