Djokovic completes Spring Masters Double for Third Time with Miami Title
Steen Kirby, Tennis Atlantic
Six of Novak Djokovic’s record 28 Masters titles have come in Miami now, as the Serbian superstar and world #1 deftly handled Kei Nishikori 6-3 6-3 in just an hour and a half of tennis. The title also means that he’s completed the Indian Wells+Miami “double”, for the third year in a row. Novak continues to dominate men’s tennis, and has been unstoppable early this season, without a loss when in full health (27-0 with 1 retirement and four titles).
Kei Nishikori gave it his best shot in his second career Masters final, and his ninth meeting against Djokovic. The Japanese #1 is now 0-5 against Djokovic since stunning him to reach the 2014 US Open final. Nishikori was not one of the tournament favorites going in, but he surprisingly handled the Miami spring heat well to earn wins over Pierre-Hugues Herbert, Alexandr Dolgopolov, Roberto Bautista Agut, Gael Monfils, and Nick Kyrgios, dropping just a set to Monfils, where he was pushed to a third set tiebreak. Nishikori’s serve was the big liability for him, as Djokovic found a way to return well enough for the easy win.
Kyrgios has now made the semifinals or better in three ATP tournaments this season. The Aussie reached his first Masters semi with wins over Milos Raonic and Andrey Kuznetsov most notably. Stan Wawrinka, Roger Federer, Andy Murray, and Rafael Nadal all went home early due to some combination of illness, or poor play, as the Miami bottom half was left rather barren.
Djokovic beat Kyle Edmund, Joao Sousa, Dominic Thiem, Tomas Berdych, and David Goffin without dropping a set, or so much as being threatened this week, as even Goffin’s efforts were not enough. The Belgian took advantage of Federer’s absence to defeat Gilles Simon and reach the semifinals for the second week in a row (also did so in Indian Wells).
Like Djokovic, Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut completed the Masters double, capturing the Miami title, after doing so in Indian Wells. The French team is playing remarkably well at the moment and beat Rajeev Ram and Raven Klaasen to take the title.
The ATP now heads to clay, and the big question is, can anyone stop Djokovic on his “worst” surface? or will the world #1 continue his unblemished play.