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Nadal and Djokovic's Keys To Success

Melbourne, Australia

Nadal© Getty ImagesRafael Nadal finished the season as No. 1 in 2008, 2010 and 2013.

Last season Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic finished together as No. 1 and 2 in the Emirates ATP Rankings for the first time as they combined for a 149-16 match record (.903) and 17 titles.

Both enjoyed outstanding seasons, and statistics show that Nadal benefitted from a great year on return (along with a consistent year on serve), while Djokovic was boosted by a banner year on serve.

Nadal led the ATP World Tour by winning 35 per cent of points on his opponents’ first serves and 34 per cent of return games. He also converted 47 percent of break points he earned, the second best rate on tour.

Djokovic put together his best serving season with career-best marks in average aces per match, first serve percentage, first serve points won (tied) and service games won.

Here is a look at both players’ success in Nadal’s three year-end No. 1 seasons (2008, ’10, ’13) and Djokovic’s last three years (No. 1 in 2011-12 and No. 2 last season):

NADAL - RETURN OF SERVE STATISTICS

Year 1st Pts. Won 2nd Pts. Won BPs Converted Return Games Won
2008 34% (1) 55% (1) 45% (3) 33% (1)
2010 31% 55% (1) 44% (T5) 29% (6)
2013 35% (1) 54% (6) 47% (2) 34% (1)
Note: ( ) is statistical ranking on ATP World Tour during season.

DJOKOVIC - SERVING STATISTICS
Year Aces 1st Serve 1st Pts. Won 2nd Pts. Won Service Games Won BPs Saved
2011 343 (4.5) 65% 74% 56% (3) 86% (7) 65% (8)
2012 512 (5.9) 64% 75% (10) 56% (5) 87% (5) 66%
2013 476 (6.3) 66% (10) 75% 60% (1) 88% (4) 65%

Nadal also had a very solid season on serve. Here’s a comparisons of his season-long serving statistics from the three years he finished No. 1.

NADAL - SERVING STATISTICS
Year Aces 1st Serve 1st Pts. Won 2nd Pts. Won Service Games Won BPs Saved
2008 283 69% (4) 72% 60% (1) 88% (4) 67% (5)
2010 310 67% (7) 75% 60% (1) 90% (2) 69% (1)
2013 221 69% (4) 73% 57% (2) 88% (3) 69% (2)

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Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic

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