World number 1 Novak Djokovic, qualified for the final of the Masters 1000 in Paris thanks to his 5-7, 7-6 (7/3), 7-5 victory against Andrey Rublev (5th), estimated on Saturday that he had never faced the Russian “playing so well”. “Rublev has been in fantastic form since the start of the week. I have never faced him playing so well,” said the Serb after the match. “He played at a very high level and gave me a lot of difficulties.”
“I had a similar feeling to yesterday and even the day before yesterday, I didn't feel very fresh but I'm very proud of this victory, I didn't feel very good on the court,” Djokovic added. “The break allowed me to recover a little and come back fresher in the third round,” he also said, referring to the break during which he notably had his back manipulated by a physiotherapist before the start of the 3rd set. “I played point after point and I am very proud of this victory.”
Bothered by a “stomach virus” which considerably weakened him, notably in the round of 16 against the Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor (23rd), the 36-year-old Serbian explained that he felt “really better” after his quarter-final victory. against the Dane Holger Rune, but he still seemed physically challenged. In the final, he will face Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov (17th), who qualified at the expense of world No.6 Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 6-7 (7/1), 7-6 (7/3). “He has been playing his best tennis for months (...). It doesn't surprise me that he's in the final here. I hope we will have a good final, it’s a very exciting challenge for both of us,” he said.