Being sick and having sick kids caused me not to have a prediction for the most anticipated match since the Australian Open – sorry about that
Novak Djokovic vs. Tomas Berdych
These two played an interesting match in Dubai not too long ago. Berdych has been quite consistent in 2015, but he needs to add his first title. If Berdych wins Monte-Carlo, it would be his second career Masters 1000 shield. Djokovic won in Paris last year and grabbed Indian Wells and Miami this year. Novak is looking for his fourth consecutive Masters 1000 shield. Nole also had banked 4900 ranking points in 2015 with the possibility of adding another 400 points tomorrow. I keep saying this as Djokovic keeps winning, but the 2015 race for #1 is looking more and more like a one horse race.
On the court, Berdych has to try to take advantage of leverage if that makes sense. His big serve and his potentially stinging returns could give Berdych the chance to dictate play. That is Berdych best and perhaps only chance to claim victory in Monte-Carlo. Djokovic scrambles so well and can shift a point from defense to offense so quickly that Berdych better dictate when he can. Djokovic is also putting word out in the locker room that he is the clear-cut #1. Djokovic can beat Berdych by using his return of serve to dominate the match or Novak can absorb some of Berdych’s first-strike style and turn the tables on the Big Czech as points progress. Novak’s multiple paths to victory lead to my prediction.
Prediction: Novak Djokovic d. Tomas Berdych 6-4, 6-2