Another confusing performance leads to more questions over Novak’s preparation

Novak Djokovic has now lost three matches in a row for the first time since 2007. After the second in this spell against Taro Daniel he assessed his performance as very weird. About two weeks later he arrives in Miami where he has been crowned champion 6 times before and lost in straight sets to Benoit Paire and produced a very confusing performance.

Where Novak goes from here is a big question, the tour now moves to clay and how comfortable is he moving and using that elbow? Judging by what we have seen so far not very! Monte-Carlo will be his first tournament on clay and of course he lives there but is it worth rushing??

Watching back the match against Paire I’m surprised no one in his camp over the last 6 weeks have put their foot down and ask if he’s actually ready…

As he has failed to gain momentum going into the clay via the hard court over the next 10 weeks it’s now clay to grass and in hindsight turning up to Indian Wells and Miami wasn’t a great choice and maybe should have headed for Monte-Carlo early.

He seemed late with the forehand and backhand and the movement I mentioned against Daniel was not there again.

It’s that stage now where you have to think so far ahead like Roger has done so well the last 15 months and Rafa too, he could have gone to Miami but why? Instead he’s been on the clay and I fully expect him to play a full clay court session in Monte-Carlo, Rome, Madrid and of course a Roland Garros.

In 2013 Novak lost in R2 of Madrid and there was some crowd trouble, he didn’t return the following two years but has since been back and does have big points to defend at all three masters before Roland Garros but he has a lot of work to do before he can think of defending titles.

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