Berdych’s Mental Meltdown

Rogers Cup, Toronto

[1] Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs. [8] Tomas Berdych (CZE) 

2013 was the last time Berdych was able to defeat Djokovic.  I have watched Berdych for years and have asked repeatedly why has such a talented player never won a Major title and only won one Masters 1000 title?  Every time I watch him lose to Djokovic, I am reminded why.   Tonight was exceptionally bad, Djokovic clearly hampered physically was serving with no pace; yet, he managed to win.  Just to show how significant the psychological block that Berdych has when playing certain opponents.  Djokovic served 49%; Berdych had eight break chances and only converted once; and he had set points in the breaker.

Berdych has never learned how to manage his emotions effectively.  He suppresses them, but that does not benefit him. If his mind is clouded by doubts, he can never think clearly and he will struggle to execute his plan.  His emotional state continues to negatively impact his game and we saw that tonight when he repeatedly missed easy shots.  Djokovic played so poorly; yet he won 7-6(6), 6-4.  Berdych will have nightmares for the rest of his career.  This was a complete mental collapse on his part.  This was the perfect opportunity for him to get a victory over Djokovic and squash the doubts.  Djokovic practically gave him the first set and still Berdych was so timid, he squandered the opportunity and in the end, he imploded.  If he is not working with a sports psychologist, he should consider doing so.  No matter how stoic he appears on the outside, this has got to further unnerve him.

1 Comment

  1. Saw part of that match and couldn’t believe either that Berdych couldn’t take Djokovic. How he lost that tie breaker is beyond me. I agree with your analysis.

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