Novak Djokovic, recently unseated as the World's No. 1 by Rafael Nadal, took down his rival in straight sets 6-3, 6-4 on Monday to capture his second-straight ATP World Tour championship in London.
It was an anti-climactic ending and looked nothing like the epic U.S. Open clash that Nadal captured over Djokovic this past summer. Their 39th meeting ended in just 1:36 minutes, effectively ending the season for Nadal. Djokovic will guide Serbia in the Davis Cup final next week.
For Djokovic, the straight-sets win marked his 22nd consecutive victory, while the title still proved elusive for Nadal, whose left knee reportedly began to act up again on Monday. Nadal uncharacteristically couldn't meet the moment, hitting into four double-faults and 23 unforced errors.
Since losing to Nadal at the U.S. Open, Djokovic has reeled off two wins over the current No. 1 and has handled Roger Federer twice, raising the question of which player is actually the best player in tennis.
“I played against someone who was much better than me tonight,” Nadal said, capping what he described as the “most emotional season of my career.”
Nadal still leads the head-to-head 22-17, but Djokovic's win means that the two heavyweights split this year's six matches at three apiece.