NOVAK DJOKOVIC will finish the yr because the world No1 tennis star however there received’t be any extra silverware in his trophy cupboard as he crashed out of the ATP Finals.
The Serbian will head for his holidays after ending an up-and-down yr with a 7-5 6-7 7-6 defeat to Dominic Thiem, who reached a second successive remaining at The O2.
Novak Djokovic can pack his luggage after his 2020 season ended by crashing out of the ATP FinalsCredit score: Reuters
Dominic Thiem couldn’t cover his emotion after battling previous the Serbian star in three tight unitsCredit score: Rex Options
This has been a breakthrough yr for the hard-hitting Austrian Thiem and this, his three hundredth on the ATP Tour, was one other important victory, one other reminder that the Huge Three is now mushrooming right into a Huge 4.
That is the final season-ending occasion in London earlier than it strikes to a brand new residence in Turin and hopefully it’s a good send-off regardless of the shortage of crowd.
Thiem, 27, is beginning to get the higher hand over Djokovic, this being the third time in 4 head-to-heads that he has prevailed.
There was an excellent lob on the road within the tenth recreation of the primary set – it was so good that Djokovic felt compelled to applaud it – after which there was the important thing break within the eleventh.
Within the second set, Thiem has solely himself guilty, carving out FOUR match factors however failing to transform any of them.
That included a double fault on the second within the tie-break, which the Serb finally claimed 12-10.
It’s to the Austrian’s credit score that he managed to regroup within the third set – sustaining an ideal document of 18 service video games held out of 18 in opposition to arguably the game’s greatest-ever returner – and e book his place within the remaining as soon as once more, coming from 4-0 down within the tie-break to win 7-5.
His run of six factors in a row was accomplished with a brutal cross-court backhand to arrange one other two match factors and after Djokovic saved the primary one serve, the world No4 closed it out as his opponent went lengthy.
Djokovic was left applauding his opponent’s hitting a number of instances all through the matchCredit score: EPA
Thiem was relentless along with his booming grounstrokes however was so efficient along with his serveCredit score: Getty Photos – Getty
Thiem, who won his maiden major, the US Open, in September, will play the winner of this night’s match between Russian Daniil Medvedev and Spaniard Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s showpiece event.
It means there’s assured to be a brand new title on the trophy come tomorrow evening.
Djokovic, 33, began the yr by successful the ATP Cup after which beating Thiem for an eighth Australian Open crown.
There was professional perception that he may go the entire method by the season unbeaten given how nicely he was taking part in.
Then Covid-19 and lockdown occurred globally and Djokovic was criticised for his anti-vax stance and his disastrous exhibition Adria Tour, which was cancelled following a glut of optimistic coronavirus exams.
After all, there was the US Open disqualification and the sheer dismantling by his rival Nadal in the French Open final.
Nonetheless, Djokovic ends the yr because the world No1 for a record-equalling sixth time.
But he is aware of that he can’t afford to waste any additional alternatives in his makes an attempt to catch Nadal and Roger Federer within the Slam stakes.
Djokovic appeared distracted at instances as he performed along with his racket through the second-set tie-breakCredit score: AP:Related Press
The Austrian wrapped up his three hundredth ATP Tour victory and assured a brand new winner on the season-ending matchCredit score: AFP or licensors