The Serb inflicted on Rafael Nadal his third defeat at Porte d’Auteuil after a sublime fight (3-6, 6-3, 7-6 , 6-2 in 4:11). Enough to make him ecstatic.
Beat Nadal at Roland Garros
Rafael Nadal. He is a huge player, who marked the history of the tournament and who lost three times in his entire career here. Already, these figures speak for themselves. Every time you run the court against him, you know you have to climb Mount Everest to be able to beat him.
The place of this victory in his career
It was the best match of my entire career at Roland Garros. I place him among the three best matches I have played, all tournaments combined, in terms of tennis quality. The fact of having beaten my biggest rival, on a court where he had so much success in 15 years, it is incredible.
His complicated start to the match
At first it looked a lot like last year’s final. Even though the start of the match was not good, I was not too nervous, because I felt that I was hitting the ball well. I was able to ramp up. The lift he gives the ball, with his forehand, it’s just incredible. But I was ready. I felt good mentally and physically. I had a clear game plan, good tactics. And I managed to get back into the game in the first set.
The click of 4e set
Even if I was led to nothing, I found my bearings and I was able to break in the second set. And then, everything went well even though I struggled with my serve. I was hoping to get some free points. I didn’t get there until the fourth set. And then, when I was led 2/0, something clicked. It is also the quality of the service which still gave me some free points.
“I will never forget the electric atmosphere, with a lot of support for both players”
It was amazing! I will never forget the electric atmosphere, with a lot of support for both players. I was delighted to see that there was no curfew. The public was able to stay. It was one of those nights, one of those matches that I will always remember.
The final against Tsitsipas
This is not the first time that I have played an epic Grand Slam semi-final and then returned to play the finals in less than 48 hours. My recovery skills are pretty good. My physiotherapist will do everything he can to keep me fresh and ready. I shouldn’t train too much. It is above all, now, to take things calmly, gently until the final.
On the form of Tsitsipas
It is the first time that he is in the final of a Grand Slam; for him, it is a great achievement. But it’s not going to stop there. He is in great physical shape. He is the leader of the Race. He matured on clay, his favorite surface. We played a high-quality straight-set semi-final match last year. So I think this game will be difficult. I hope I can recharge my batteries as much as possible, because I really need some firepower for Sunday.