Khachanov Denies Djokovic His 5th Paris Masters

Khachanov Paris

Rolex Paris Masters, France

Men’s Final: [2] Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs. [18] Karen Khachanov (RUS)

Djokovic won their only prior meeting earlier this year; however, that was irrelevant today as the Serbian was a bit exhausted from his brutal semifinal match against Roger Federer. Yet, the Serbian broke first and could have potential won the first set if he was able to hold onto his serve. Emotions were running high on both sides of the net. The Russian realized this was his opportunity for a major victory and was quite frustrated at himself when he made a careless error. Djokovic was yelling at his team and slamming the ball when he made an unusual error because he knew he had to limited energy reserves.

Khachanov did not lose his calm after he was broken; instead he shrugged it off and dug in immediately to break Djokovic in his very next service game. At 4-5 down, the Russian went down 0-30 and Djokovic had an opportunity to potentially steal the first set; however, Khachanov served impressively when his back was against the wall and he held on to his serve. Frustrated at his missed opportunity, Djokovic was broken in his very next service game and Khachanov served brilliantly once again at crucial moments to win the first set.

Djokovic, clearly depleted physically, was broken in his second service game of the second set and he could never recover.  Now it was simply a matter of the Russian controlling his nerves and holding his serve to win the biggest title of his career. There were no outward signs that he was awed by the occasion; however, he was probably churning inside. The Russian served well, used his forehand effectively and make some incredible gets to surprise the crowd and perhaps even his opponent. He won 7-5, 6-4 to claim his first Masters 1000 title; however, more important he got a major top ten victory.

SOURCE OF IMAGES:  serveandrally

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