Novak Djokovic vs. Andy Murray: Each Player's Keys to Victory in Wimbledon Final
Despite the craziness that ensued throughout the early rounds of Wimbledon, the men's final promises to be the best possible, with the No. 1 seed taking on the No. 2 seed.
Novak Djokovic has cruised through most of this tournament, winning each of his first five matches in straight sets over some top competition. However, he had a much harder time against Juan Martin del Potro in the semifinals and barely escaped after five long sets.
Meanwhile, Andy Murray had an easier run to the final, although he still had some struggles along the way. Still, he is looking to become the first British player to win this event since Fred Perry in 1936.
This is certain to be a thrilling match, although neither will be successful unless they follow these keys to victory.
Stay Aggressive at Net
Throughout the tournament, Murray has not been shy about going up to the net to finish points. In the quarterfinals against Fernando Verdasco, he went up 45 times. He did it 51 times against Jerzy Janowicz in the semifinals.
While the success rate is not as high as he might have wanted in these matches, he needs to continue this aggressiveness in the final.
If given enough opportunities, Djokovic will simply wear you away until you make a mistake or allow him to get a winner. Murray cannot play back and forth with him on the baseline the entire match.
Instead, the Brit needs to take control of the match by going up to net and putting the pressure on his opponent.
Attack Second Serve
While it is usual for a player to be less successful on the second serve when they take some speed off of it, this does not happen too much to Djokovic.
The Serbian has won 59 percent of points on his second serve in 2013, which is the best mark in the world. In this tournament, he has been even better, sometimes winning over 80 percent of those points.
However, Del Potro proved that it is possible to beat the top seed in this area. In the semifinals, Djokovic only won 39 percent of second-serve points, which allowed his opponent to remain in the match until the very end.
Murray must be able to play the same way in the final. He has to attack the second serve and make sure he gets points on the return. Otherwise, he will have a hard time getting any breaks in this match.
Convert Break Points
So far at Wimbledon, Djokovic has had solid performances against very good competition. He defeated Tommy Haas and Tomas Berdych in straight sets before finishing off Del Potro in the semifinals.
However, there is a big jump between this trio and Murray, who is the No. 2 player in the world and has been incredibly consistent lately.
As a result, he will not be able to miss opportunities like he has in previous rounds. After going 4-for-10 on break points in the quarterfinals, that number dropped dramatically to a 3-for-15 mark in the semifinals. He lost focus and could not finish games when he had the chance.
Against Murray, every single game will be important. It will not be surprising to see the match go five sets, with more than a couple of those going to tiebreaks.
When Djokovic gets an opportunity to get a break, he must win the points and finish off the game.
Keep Unforced Errors Low
Although this seems obvious for anyone in the sport, it seems at this point that the only one who can beat Djokovic is himself.
On his way to the semifinals, the Serbian did not drop a set and was averaging only 12.8 unforced errors per match. In his last appearance, he suffered 48 unforced errors and barely managed a five-set victory.
When Djokovic is playing at his best, there is no one in the world who can beat him. However, he gives opponents a chance to win when he makes dumb mistakes on physical and mental errors.
Murray is good enough to give the top seed a battle regardless of what happens. If Djokovic does not cut down on the errors, the British star will surely win his first Wimbledon title.
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