Novak Djokovic labels Dan Evans defeat as ‘one of my worst matches in years’

World No 1 was stunned by the Briton in straight sets in the third round on Thursday

Alex Pattle
Friday 16 April 2021 09:26
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Novak Djokovic exited the Monte-Carlo Masters at the hands of Dan Evans
Novak Djokovic exited the Monte-Carlo Masters at the hands of Dan Evans

Novak Djokovic has labelled his third-round defeat by Dan Evans at the Monte-Carlo Masters “one of the worst matches” he has played in years.

Evans shocked the world No 1 with a straight-sets win on Thursday, seeing off the Serb 6-4 7-5 for his first tour-level victory on clay in four years.

The Briton, ranked 33 in the world, will now play his first ever Masters quarter-final when he takes on Belgium’s David Goffin.

“Congratulations to him,” Djokovic said after his defeat by Evans. “I mean, he deserved to win. He was a better player.

“Just more focused I guess and played with a better quality in the decisive moments.

“This has been probably one of the worst matches and performances from my side I can recall in the last years.

“I don’t want to take anything away from his win but, from my side, I just felt awful on the court overall. Just nothing worked. It’s one of those days.

“I can’t take anything positive away from this match. It’s not the first neither the last loss, but definitely leaves a bitter feeling exiting the court this way.”

The result is a setback for Djokovic in the 33-year-old’s preparations for the French Open, which will begin next month and run into June after a one-week delay was announced.

Australian Open champion Djokovic, an 18-time Grand Slam winner, has one French Open to his name. The Serb won the Paris-based clay court major in 2016.

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