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“Sizzling-headed” Novak Djokovic contemplates Miami after the Indian Wells setback

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© Clive Brunskill / Workers – Getty Photos Sport

World no. 1 Novak Djokovic returned to Indian Wells for the primary time in 5 years, in search of his sixth title within the desert. Nevertheless, Novak couldn’t chase the trophy following a troublesome 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 loss to the 20-year-old Luca Nardi within the third spherical!

World no. 123 shocked a 24-time Main winner, holding Novak with out an ATP title in 2024. Djokovic has but to resolve whether or not he’ll play in Miami, having to chill down a bit and take into consideration his subsequent transfer. The Serb misplaced within the Australian Open semi-final to Jannik Sinner and took 5 weeks off, recharging batteries forward of the primary Masters 1000 occasion of the season.

Nevertheless, Djokovic didn’t play nicely within the desert, beating Aleksandar Vukic in three units within the second spherical earlier than falling to Nardi after a pale efficiency for his requirements.

Novak Djokovic, Indian Wells 2024© Clive Brunskill / Workers – Getty Photos Sport

Novak requested for a abdomen tablet and couldn’t use the momentum from the second set, struggling within the decider and permitting Luca to safe a career-best victory towards his idol.

The Serb gained one level greater than the Italian. Nonetheless, he didn’t construct the benefit within the pivotal moments, delivering two breaks from solely 4 break probabilities and struggling three breaks from 11 alternatives introduced to the younger gun.

Nardi attacked and fired 36 winners and 41 unforced errors. Djokovic stood on an 18-31 ratio, forging the benefit within the shortest exchanges as much as 4 strokes however dropping floor within the extra superior ones. The opening set noticed a single break level, and Nardi seized it within the fifth sport to forge the benefit.

The younger Italian fired two service winners at deuce within the second sport of the encounter, notching his first sport towards the legend. They closed video games three and 4 with highly effective serves earlier than Novak skilled points at 2-2 after main 40-15.

Luca climbed again and earned a break level after Novak’s forehand error. The younger gun pulled the set off and fired a forehand winner to ship a break and acquire the benefit after 23 minutes. Luca served nicely in video games six and eight, sustaining the lead and holding the strain on Novak.

World no. 1 served to remain within the set in sport 9 and closed it after the rival’s backhand error, lowering the deficit to 5-4.

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Luca Nardi, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Workers – Getty Photos Sport

Luca Nardi shocked Novak Djokovic in Indian Wells.

Nardi confirmed no signal of nerves whereas serving for the set in sport ten, opening it with a volley winner and touchdown an unreturned serve for 6-4 after 44 minutes and a large enhance.

Djokovic outplayed his rival within the shortest rallies within the second set. Additionally, he discovered the rhythm on the return, delivering two breaks and forcing a decider. Novak climbed again from 0-40 within the second sport and painted a volley winner for his first break probability of the match.

Luca sprayed a backhand error and pushed a five-time champion 2-0 in entrance. As an alternative of constructing on that, Djokovic struggled behind the preliminary shot within the third sport, dealing with 5 break factors and dropping serve after a questionable name as he and Nardi stopped the motion.

Luca Nardi & Novak Djokovic, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Workers – Getty Photos Sport

Luca locked the end result at 2-2 with an unreturned serve, and Novak adopted that within the subsequent one. Djokovic created a break level in sport six after Nardi’s double fault and attacked along with his forehand, inflicting the rival’s mistake and opening a 4-2 hole.

World no. 1 cemented the break with a maintain at love in sport seven and created two set factors on the return at 5-2. Nardi saved them with courageous hitting and compelled Djokovic’s mistake to extend the set. Novak made a recent begin at 5-3, incomes set factors with a service winner and seizing the primary with a backhand winner on the web, introducing a decider after an hour and 33 minutes.

Luca grabbed the primary sport with a forehand drive-volley winner and earned three break probabilities within the subsequent one. Novak denied them and held after 12 and a half minutes for 1-1, giving all the things to extend the battle. The younger gun thought of these probabilities solely briefly, firing an ace within the third sport and holding for 2-1.

Djokovic clinched the fourth sport with a service winner, hoping for some return probabilities. As an alternative, Luca opened a 3-2 hole with a smash winner and made a decisive transfer on the return a couple of minutes later. Novak sprayed a expensive forehand error and confronted three break factors.

Luca Nardi & Novak Djokovic, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Workers – Getty Photos Sport

Nardi transformed the second after attacking from his backhand, opening a 4-2 lead and shifting nearer to a shock.

The 20-year-old cemented the break with a service winner in sport seven, with Djokovic serving to remain within the match at 2-5. Novak held at love, lowering the deficit and having another probability to extend the battle. Nardi served for the win at 5-3 and didn’t enable any setbacks, firing two winners at 15-15 for 2 match factors.

The Italian landed an ace on the primary, incomes a career-best victory and reserving a spot within the fourth spherical regardless of falling to David Goffin within the second qualifying spherical! “We are going to see about Miami. I left the courtroom ten minutes in the past, and I am nonetheless hot-headed. I would like a day or two to determine what could be the very best,” Novak Djokovic stated.

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