Grow your visibility across sports enthusiasts and fans.

Banner Image
Banner Image

Tennis | 4 min read | sports-social-view-orange 6.6K

Top five epic matches between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic

The finalists have been decided. Two rivals who know each other better than anyone else. One of the most prolific rivalries of the Open Era


Rishan Rai

Sat Jan 26 2019

The finalists have been decided. Two rivals who know each other better than anyone else. One of the most prolific rivalries of the Open Era. Initially, it was overshadowed by the historic Federer-Nadal rivalry but things have changed in the last 10 years.

Nobody has beaten Nadal more times than Djokovic and nobody has beaten Djokovic more times than Nadal as they have played each other a record 52 times with Djokovic leading 27-25.

They have fought for many important titles in their careers and their 53rd meeting is going to be just as important if not more. Here is a list of five epic matches between these two legends.


Only two months after their five-set thrillers at the French Open, Nadal and Djokovic came up with another classic. Nadal managed to finally beat his nemesis on a hard court after three years as their match lasted for nearly two and a half hours. The rallies kept the crowd on the edge of their seats until the very end. Nadal would then go on to win the title after beating Milos Raonic in straight sets.

Result: Rafael Nadal def. Novak Djokovic 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (7-2).


It seems unfair that this encounter is ranked at number four but that just shows how good the top three matches were. One of the best and longest three-set match in the Open Era as it lasted for four hours and three minutes. Djokovic was looking for his first victory over Nadal on clay and he was as close as you could get as he had three match points but could not capitalise on any. Nadal would later go on to lose to Roger Federer in the final but it was this game that stole the show.

Result: Rafael Nadal def. Novak Djokovic 3-6, 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (11-9)


The stage was set as the two titans clashed on the centre court for the first time in eight years and it was a match for the ages. It could even be compared with the great 2008 final between Nadal and Federer. Djokovic who claimed the win this time began his march of dethroning Nadal as the world number one after a tough year with injuries. The match lasted for 5 hours and 15 minutes as Djokovic went on to claim his fourth Wimbledon title.

Result: Novak Djokovic def. Rafael Nadal 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (11-9), 3-6, 10-8.


Another French Open match and another classic. A rematch of previous year's final and it was Nadal again who emerged victoriously. The match lasted for nearly 5 hours and was their longest ever encounter on clay. Djokovic was a break up in the fifth set but Nadal clawed his way back to take the set 9-7. Nadal would go on to beat his countryman David Ferrer in the final and claim his eighth Roland Garros title.

Result: Rafael Nadal def. Novak Djokovic 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-7 (3-7), 9-7.



Definitely one of the greatest matches in the history of the game. This match went into the history books as the longest ever final in Grand Slam history as it lasted for 5 hours and 53 minutes. This match was so physical that the two players weren't even able to stand on their two feet during the trophy presentation. It was Djokovic’s seventh consecutive win over Nadal as he claimed his fifth Grand Slam and third in a row. Nadal would have been disappointed to end up on the losing side as he was a break up in the fifth but as always, Nole found a way back.

Result: Novak Djokovic def. Rafael Nadal 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 7-5.

While Djokovic is looking to win a record seventh Australian Open title, Nadal is one win away from being the first man since Roy Emerson to win each grand slam at least twice. Whatever may be the result, history will be made on January 27.

Video: Rafael Nadal vs Novak Djokovic Best Shots and Rallies

Enjoy this article? Don't forget to share. sports-social-facebook-logo-black

Hello Readers!

Already a Member ? Or Not a Member ?


248 Stories

Get the Latest Updates, Trends, Blogs, Stories, and News about Tennis