French Open 2020 mens singles final: Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal – live! – The Guardian

Q. You said on court that playing Rafa at Roland Garros is the biggest challenge in sport. Can you explain why? What do you have to do to defeat him on Sunday?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, isn’t it obvious? He won this tournament so many times that I don’t think any player has won that many times any tournament. He’s lost twice in his entire career on this court. Obviously the conditions are different than the ones that we are used to playing in May and June. I think that could be a better chance for me, obviously the ball not bouncing as high over the shoulder as he likes it usually.

Yeah, I mean, look, regardless of the conditions, he’s still there, he’s Rafa, he’s in the finals and we’re playing on clay. Best-of-five playing him in the finals at Roland Garros, I know that feeling. I did lose to him on this court most of the matches that we played, but I also won one match in 2015 in straight sets in quarters. That’s the match that I’ll look back at and obviously try to take some positives out of it and use it tactically against him.

I’m not feeling exhausted physically so much after tonight’s match, obviously almost four hours. It was a great battle. But I feel fine. I think a day and a half will be plenty of time for me to recover. I’m really looking forward to a great battle with Rafa.

Q. He’s going for his 20th slam title. You’re going for your 18th. People are saying maybe this is the biggest match you’ve ever played. Do you feel there’s maybe more at stake this time?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Finals of Grand Slam is always huge. This is what you work for all year long, every season hoping that you can put yourself in a position to fight for Grand Slam trophies. But I don’t think it’s the biggest match that I have ever played in my life. I think there were some bigger ones.

In terms of importance, I mean, if I have to compare, even though I don’t like, but probably the first Wimbledon finals that I actually played against him. Wimbledon was always the one that I wanted to win as a kid and dreamed of winning. That’s probably the one that stands out. French Open 2016 against Andy Murray here. Every French Open final that I played was the match of my life before I actually won it.

Yeah, I mean, it does have a certain I would say significance and difference when I play French Open finals to any other slam final. This is the one that I won the least, so of course I am extremely motivated to try to get my hands on another trophy.