Top seed Djokovic defeated the eight-time defending champion and third seed 6-2, 7-6(1) in one hour and 52 minutes. It broke Nadal’s 46-match winning streak at the Monte-Carlo Country Club.
Djokovic has now won 14 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles and 37th
trophies overall. He has now won every ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title barring the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.
Djokovic is the first player to beat Nadal three times in a clay-court final. He also ended Nadal’s 81-match winning streak on clay in the month of April. His last loss on clay in April had come on 8 April 2005 to Igor Andreev in the Valencia quarter-finals.
Djokovic lost just 12 points through the first five games, showcasing terrific defence early on and hit almost 50 per cent of his backhands down the line to wrap up the 48-minute opener. He converted his eighth set point when Nadal hit a double fault.
The momentum shifted early in the second set, when Nadal started to put Djokovic under pressure in the third and fifth games. With the court drying out and the balls kicking up higher, Nadal’s potency increased.
Despite four breaks of serve in the set, Djokovic remained mentally strong and in the tie-break regained his dominance in baseline rallies. He sealed the title with a forehand down the line, which ended Nadal’s long reign in Monaco.
Djokovic is now 15-19 in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series, having avenged two runner-up finishes to Nadal in the 2009 and 2012 Monte-Carlo finals.
The start of the final was delayed due to rain. As the players stepped out onto Court Central at 2pm CET, the rain started to fall and got heavier as the pair began their warm up. The players left the court and returned at 2:42pm.