Guruvi Tennis

Djokovic vs. Nadal on Clay

Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are 2 of the top men tennis players on the ATP tour in 2011 and between them have won all of the recent major tournaments on clay. We used the Guruvi Tennis app to score 3 of the recent clay tournament finals that Nadal or Djokovic played in. The results show some interesting differences between these 2 tennis stars.

The 3 matches that we tracked were the 2011 Monte Carlo Open where Nadal defeated David Ferrer 6-4, 7-5; the 2011 Madrid Open where Djokovic defeated Nadal 7-5, 6-4; and the 2011 Italian Open where Djokovic again defeated Nadal 6-4, 6-4. Looking at the statistics produced by the Guruvi Tennis app, the first major difference we noticed was that Djokovic won a lot more points by hitting winners in his victories than Nadal had in his victory in the Monte Carlo Open as shown below. This highlights Djokovic’s more aggressive style, at least in these matches.

Stats Summary

The second major difference we noticed was the effectiveness of Djokovic’s backhand, or should we say the ineffectiveness of Nadal’s backhand. As the below table shows, Djokovic was much more balanced in that the number of his backhand winners were near the number of his forehand winners while hitting slightly more backhand errors than forehand errors. On the other hand Nadal hit only 1 backhand winner for every 8 forehand winners while his backhand errors were only slightly less than his forehand errors.

Winners and Erros

Overall, the stats show that in these clay championship matches Djokovic was more aggressive and offensive minded and was much more balanced. You can apply the above analysis to your own tennis matches using the Guruvi Tennis app. Remember, that it is OK if your backhand is not as strong as your forehand and you don’t hit many backhand winners but in this case you should at least practice to make your backhand shot consistent and reliable so you don’t make many errors on it. When your backhand is weak and inconsistent, that’s when it becomes a liability that your opponents can exploit.