SONY OPEN TENNIS 2014
Djokovic Prepared To Battle Nadal In Miami Final
by ATP Staff|
World No. 2 Novak Djokovic will attempt to win the Indian Wells-Miami double for the second time in his career when he faces top seed Rafael Nadal in the Sony Open Tennis final on Sunday. Djokovic knows his opponent well, having played the left-handed Spaniard 39 previous times in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series.
“I have seen a couple matches of Rafa's [this week],” said Djokovic. “He's hitting the ball really well, feeling confident on this court. He's never won this tournament, so I think that is extra motivation for him.”
After a relatively slow start to his season – it was in 2006 that Djokovic last entered Indian Wells without a title - the World No. 2 turned the tables in the first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event of the year, beating Roger Federer 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(3) in a thrilling final.
“I knew my game was there," Djokovic said. "I just need to keep on moving, keep on working hard, and mentally believe that I can come back winning the big events.
“It's what happened in Indian Wells. It was a very special tournament for me because I came back from set down in several matches to win the tournament. It gave me a lot of wind in the back, a lot of confidence that I carried on in Miami.
“I won against Roger who is playing some great tennis this year again. To come back from a set down and win 7-6 in the third, it meant a lot for my confidence.
“[Federer is] a big-time player. He loves playing on the big stage and has so much success in his career. So it was a big one for me, and I carried it to Miami, and hopefully I can get another one on Sunday."
Djokovic is ready to take advantage of Sunday’s big haul, hoping to earn the $787,000 in champion's prize money and add a fourth Miami crown (2008, '11-12) to his collection of 17 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 trophies. The Serb has a chance to join Federer as the only players to achieve the Indian Wells-Miami double twice, having previously done so in 2011.
“It's going to be interesting," Djokovic said. "I'm going to be very well rested and physically prepared for Sunday.”