Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic meet Friday in the semifinal of the 2015 French Open.
Andy Murray has dropped three sets this tournament and is coming off a four-set win over David Ferrer. Murray has played 76 games in his last two matches and just one tie break. Murray has won at least 75 percent of his first serve points and has combined for 88 winners in his last two matches. Murray has 25 aces in his last three matches and has gotten at least 54 percent of his first serves in play. Murray looks like a completely different player on clay and has had far less mental breakdowns this tournament. Murray is coming off a match in which he had 36 unforced errors, but overall, he’s playing a very, very solid game. Murray looks to reach his first French Open final and second major final this year.
Novak Djokovic has yet to drop a set this tournament and is coming off a victory over Rafael Nadal. Djokovic has played no more than 30 games this tournament and has zero tiebreaks. Djokovic has won at least 69 percent of his first serve points and has hit 92 winners in his last two matches. Djokovic has 11 winners in his last three matches and has gotten at least 63 percent of his first serves in play. Djokovic continues to steamroll his competition and has shown little to no weaknesses throughout this ridiculous run. Djokovic has just two double faults all tournament but is coming off a match in which he had 30 unforced errors. Djokovic look to reach his third French Open final and fourth final in his last five major appearances.
These two have played each other 26 times, and Djokovic has won 18 of those meetings. Djokovic has beaten Murray the last seven times, including the last three times they’ve played this year, with their most recent meeting coming at the Miami Masters. They have faced each other just twice on clay, and Djokovic won those matches as well. Murray’s last win over Djokovic came in the 2013 Wimbledon.
While Murray shocked me with his resolve against Ferrer and clearly is a different player than he’s been in the past, Djokovic is simply at another level and hasn’t flinched at all during this tournament. Like Serena Williams should be the overwhelming favorite on the women’s side, Djokovic has to be the guy to beat on the men’s. I can’t pick against Novak.