Tennis: Djokovic wins 2016 Rogers Cup

Top-ranked Djokovic defeats Nishikori in straight sets in Rogers Cup championship

July 31, 2016, AVIVA Centre at York University, Toronto – With unrelenting pressure similar to the gushing water at Niagara Falls, world No. 1 Novak Djokovic claimed his fourth Rogers Cup title (2007, 2011, 2012, and 2016) by defeating Japan’s Kei Nishikori, 6-3, 7-5. The victory increased Djokovic’s leading record in the open era to 30 ATP Masters 1000 titles – the Rogers Cup is one of nine such tournaments on the Tour – whereas Nishikori, after three finals, is still seeking his first.

Having overwhelmed Gael Monfils the night before in the semifinals, Djokovic continued his winning ways by proceeding to make 84 percent of his first serves, winning 86 percent of those points (19/22) in the first set. For the set, he won 77 percent of his service games and did not have a break point against him.

Meanwhile Nishikori appeared to be slowed by his gutsy three-set victory over Grigor Dimitrov in the quarterfinals and his emotional win over the second seed Stan Wawrinka in the semis.  Three unforced errors in the sixth game eventually gave Djokovic the first set, 6-3.

In the second set, Nishikori began to find his footing just as the afternoon sun started its descent. He stayed a few feet further back to receive Djokovic’s serves. His return of serve had a shorter swing and became a little more measured. His strokes were less flat with a higher clearance over the net. With longer volleys, he was able utilize sharper angles, and set up his shots more and more.

Even though Nishikori was broken in the third game of the second set, it was clear that the real match had begun, although a bit too late to stage a comeback. In the sixth game, he was able to break back and was go on serve again before ceding the match to the Serb.

Nishikori talked about the match in response to a question at his press conference from Meniscus:

“He raised his level, I think, a lot from these couple days, couple days ago. He played really deep, and he didn’t give me any, like, free points. Especially he was serving really well, so I didn’t have many, you know, chances for my return game. So I was really feeling the pressure every game.

“Maybe [in the] second set I had some chance, but there were too many unforced errors from me. Well, also he was playing good, but I couldn’t play good tennis today.”

Photos: Novak Djokovic def. Kei Nishikori, 6-3, 7-5 – 2016 Rogers Cup championship
all photos by Kwai Chan / Meniscus Magazine

Videos: Novak Djokovic press conference – 2016 Rogers Cup champion
video by Mai D. Chan / Meniscus Magazine

Video: Kei Nishikori press conference (English) – 2016 Rogers Cup runner-up
video by Mai D. Chan / Meniscus Magazine

Video: Kei Nishikori press conference (Japanese) – 2016 Rogers Cup runner-up
video by Mai D. Chan / Meniscus Magazine