Late wildcard entrants Novak Djokovic and Gael Monfils will meet for the Eastbourne title Saturday.
Djokovic, who has never won a grass title outside of Wimbledon, cruised to a 6-4, 6-4 victory over the young Russian Daniil Medvevev.
“I am undoubtedly enjoying this week and the fact that I’m in the final obviously makes it even better. But I felt very welcomed from the first day by the people in Eastbourne,” said Djokovic. “I’m really glad that I’ll be able to fight for the trophy tomorrow. I haven’t had too many opportunities to fight for the trophy in the last 10 to 12 months. I’m hoping that I can continue on this path of raising my performance and the quality of tennis.”
Djokovic has just one title on the season coming in Doha. And in the final he’ll be heavily favored over Monfils who he leads 13-0, though they’ve never met on grass.
“Gael is such a dynamic player and unpredictable. He has the full package,” said Djokovic. “If things come together for him and he wants to perform well that day, he can be really tough. Especially with that serve, he can beat anyone.”
Monfils got through a tough test with countryman Richard Gasquet 6-2, 6-7(7), 7-6(4). Monfils, though tweaked his knee during the win leading to specualation the Frenchman might be able to play tomorrow.
“It was a big battle mentally, so I’m happy to get through it,” said Monfils. “I really hope to be fine for the final tomorrow and to be at 100 per cent. I’ll need to be aggressive and play my best.”
The 16th-ranked Monfils will be the first player Djokovic has faced ranked inside the Top 45 this week.
In a over-baked Antayla event in Turkey, Yuichi Sugita will battle Adrian Mannarino for the title.
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