• Djokovic takes on Troicki in all-Serb clash

    11/10/11 2:46 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Djokovic takes on Troicki in all-Serb clash Friends and familiar foes Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki will face each other again on Thursday in Paris. A place in the quarterfinals of the season's final Masters event is at stake.

    Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki will be squaring off for the 11th time in their careers and for the eighth time in the past two seasons when they meet in round three of the BNP Paribas Masters on Thursday.

    Djokovic is dominating the head-to-head series 9-1, including 8-0 on hard courts. Troicki has not been competitive since extending his fellow Serb to five sets in the first round of the 2010 U.S. Open, a span of four more matches. They most recently faced each other earlier this year in Miami, where Djokovic rolled 6-3, 6-2.

    Only a less-than-100-percent Djokovic would give Troicki a real chance in this one, but it appears that Djokovic is back after an injury-plagued loss to Kei Nishikori in Basel. The world No. 1 cruised past Ivan Dodig 6-4, 6-3 on Wednesday to improve his 2011 record to 68-4.

    Troicki is limping--figuratively, not literally--to the finish line of what is still his beast season on tour. The world No. 19 boasts a 40-25 record but he has won only six of his last 15 matches. Troicki showed signs of his early-season form by dismissing Sergiy Stakhovsky 6-4, 6-4 during second-round action.

    The underdog has a mental block to begin with when it comes to going up against his favored countryman and their head-to-head history will not help his cause. Unless Djokovic plays like he ready to get out of Paris and rest for London, this should be over in straight sets.

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Troicki takes first set. novak still hasnt gotten that wishy washy serve under control.

tj600 , 11/10/11 12:56 PM

Typical of a choker. Troicki has a ton of BP doesn't convert and then gets broken in the next game. Hilarious stuff...

bleck , 11/10/11 1:30 PM

Well, Nole doesn't want to go home yet after all. Victor should've challenged that call in the second set though, would've given him a break and even looked out from where I'm sitting. What was his box thinking????

deuce , 11/10/11 1:50 PM

deuce, That sounds awefully strange. I see only one explanation. This match was all theatrics...

bleck , 11/10/11 2:02 PM

Viktor is simply the Verdasco of Serbia.

numero , 11/10/11 2:02 PM

numero, lol. Couldn't put it better. That match of verdasco vs nadal I think it was in cincy, what a choker that verdasco.

bleck , 11/10/11 2:08 PM

Except that Verdasco doesn't like Nadal and made him fight to the death for that AO win. Troicki on the other hand, seems to be always choking. No exceptions.

Nole has to sort this serve out. Good one moment, lousy the next, simply wont cut it.

samprallica , 11/10/11 4:44 PM

deuce, 11/10/11 1:50 PM
I'm still not sure about that. There was something odd about that match. One minute he was going through all the motions of being in a lot of pain: the next moment he is engaged in a punishing 42 stroke rally which (if I remember rightly) he won. Also his entourage look amazingly calm when he lost the first set but by the same token there was none of the on-the-feet, fist-pumping and arm-waving when he won the 2nd set.
Nor did Nole celebrate the win in his usual manner.

It wouldn't surprise me if he now pulled out. Does he really want to risk worsening the shoulder by engaging in a potentially gruelling match against Tsonga?

ed251137 , 11/10/11 7:29 PM

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1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
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