It’s been a good weekend for Andy Murray: Beating Novak Djokovic for the first time in two years and eight matches to win the Canadian Open (Rogers Cup) Masters, and also moving back up to number two in the world, dropping Roger Federer to third.
Murray looked fantastic all tournament long, beating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Kei Nishikori among top 10 seeds before meeting Novak Djokovic. In the final, Murray dropped a set for the first time in the tournament, but unlike previous encounters, it didn’t make him lose his focus or built up steam, looking even more dominant in the third set with a 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 victory.
Djokovic was busy complaining this weekend. His elbow, the smell of pot in the stands. He’s the best player in the world, but his tendency to use certain tricks and tactics during matches that have nothing to do with tennis haven’t disappeared. It’s usually easier to spot when he loses matches, when his frustration levels rise.
It was the second Masters title for Murray in 2015, following his win over Rafael Nadal in Madrid. He also lost one Masters final (Miami) to Djokovic. He also lost a Grand Slam final (Australian) to Djokovic. He’s been doing a lot of losing to Djokovic in general over the last two years.
Since the 2013 Wimbledon final, which was also the last time Murray won a Grand Slam tournament, he’s been beaten up by Djokovic. This year alone it’s happened four times. Besides the mentioned finals, it also took place in the Roland Garros semifinal and the Indian Wells Masters semifinal. With Murray’s streak-breaking win, he’s taken down Djokovic’s lead in the rivalry to 19-9.
This all leads up to the US Open with a short detour in Cincinnati, a Masters tournament Murray has won twice but hasn’t been to the final of since 2011. It didn’t stop him from winning the US Open in 2012, and overall the link between winning the Masters prior to a Grand Slam isn’t a very strong one. Murray is in good form, and that’s all that matters.
Better than Djokovic in a five-set match? It’ll come down to that, probably, or against Roger Federer. The two of them have beaten Murray this year in the Slams, and are likely to be those standing in his way at Flushing Meadows, unless Stanislas Wawrinka gets into one of these moods of imitating one of the best players in the world.