Novak Djokovic was already favoured to win the US Open but will be seen as a much bigger favourite now with the shock exit of Andy Murray at the quarter-finals stage. He faces Gael Monfils in the semis as he moves one step closer to a 13th slam title. See all the H2H matches between the players.
Watch the match here: Djokovic vs Monfils US Open Live Stream
Djokovic came into the tournament with injury woes but everything has gone right for him in the lead up to the semi finals. He has completed just nine sets with four of them coming in his opening round match against Jerzy Janowicz. He has had one walkover while being the beneficiary of two retirements – the second of which was against Jo Wilfried Tsonga in the semi finals at 2 sets up.
Being rusty going into tougher tests might be concerning for some but Djokovic is far from worried. “Actually, in this stage of the season, considering some physical issues I have had in the last month, month and a half, this was the scenario that I needed and I wished for. I got a lot of days off and recovered my body.” he said.
Meanwhile, Gael Monfils is having an impressive year and this run to the semi finals has him at No. 8 in the live rankings. With Roger Federer one of the seven players above him, he is primed to earn a spot in the year ending World Tour Finals as well as having a chance to improve on his career high ranking of 7 – although the gap between him and Milos Raonic is high at the moment.
Monfils is 0-12 against Djokovic including once this year but the World No.1 is not writing him off. “He seems more focused at this time of his career. Especially on the hard court this year maybe he’s playing the best tennis he ever played. He’s very consistent. He hasn’t dropped a set till semis. That says a lot about the level he’s on.”
15 straight sets and just two that extended past 5-5 has meant Monfils has had a stress free run to the semi finals. He was aided by the draw breaking down, meaning that Lucas Pouille was the highest ranked opponent he has had to play all fortnight. Given Monfils current level however, he would have had great chances to defeat either Roberto Bautista Agut or Rafael Nadal had they been his quarter final opponent too. The match has the potential to be fascinating given the new inspired and focused Monfils that we have seen this year.
Prediction – Novak Djokovic in four sets