>> Saturday, March 31, 2012
World #1 Novak Djokovic will be defending his Sony Ericsson Open title against #4 Andy Murray when the two took contrasting paths to the finals of the Miami 2012 tennis tournament. The Miami 2012 men’s singles finals will be broadcast live online through video streaming here. Djokovic is one win away from a third Miami title, after defeating 21st seed Juan Monaco 6-0, 7-6(5) in the semi-finals on Friday. Murray advanced to the final after world #2 Rafael Nadal withdrew due to a left knee injury. The final between Djokovic and Murray will mark the third time the two players have met in this tournament having split their first two matches.
Djokovic quote after winning his semifinal: "As I did yesterday in the quarter-finals, I started very strong, just going for the shots, being very aggressive… Then I just wasn't able to close it out. It was a very similar match to the one against Ferrer... It was [an] exciting match I think for us to play and for the crowd. I didn't expect an easy match and [I'm] just happy to be through…"
Djokovic quote on playing Murray in the Miami 2012 final: "He likes the conditions. He likes to play in the heat, as well, and has a good serve… So we kind of play similar, as well. We grew up together. We know each other really well. We have been rivals since and good friends off the court. It's going to be a good match. I don't think it's going to affect him that much that he hasn't played today, but we'll see what happens."
Nadal quote after withdrawing from the Miami 2012 semifinals: "I waited until today in the morning. I did a lot of treatment yesterday… But I am not ready to compete today. I am very sorry for the fans. I'm very sorry for the tournament. I'm very sorry for everybody who was ready to watch the match on television… I cannot go on court and lie to everybody… I started to have problems on the knee before Indian Wells… But that problem [was] not limiting me to play at 100 per cent. So I played in Indian Wells with the normal conditions, playing in good shape physically. Here, [it] is different."
Djokovic at Miami: The 24-year-old defending champion has a 23-4 career mark at the Miami tennis tournament. Last year was his third final as he rallied to defeat No. 1 Nadal 46 63 76(4) in the finals match. He also won the title in 2007 (d. No. 2 Nadal in QF, Murray in SF, d. Canas in F) and was runner-up in 2009 to Murray. In last year’s tournament, in his first five matches before the finals, he was not broken in 40 service games.
For the 2012 season, Djokovic enters the finals with a 19-2 match record on the season. He lost to American John Isner in the semifinals of Indian Wells 76 36 76. He won first title by winning his fifth career Grand Slam title at Australian Open. His 5 hours 53 minutes five set marathon victory over Nadal was the longest final in Grand Slam history. He is also the current champion at the US Open and at Wimbledon. At his second tournament in Dubai, he reached the semifinals before being beaten by Murray.
Murray at Miami: The 24-year-old British No. 1 has a 14-5 match record in Miami. He won the title in 2009 by defeating Djokovic, and was a semifinalist in 2007 where he lost to Djokovic. He lost his first set in the tournament with a three set victory over Janko Tipsaveric. He received two walkovers – over #26 Milos Raonic due to ankle injury in third round, and #2 Nadal in the semifinals.
For the 2012 season, Murray enters his third final of the year with a 1-1 record in finals and 17-3 match record on the season. He won his 22nd career ATP World Tour title in Brisbane by defeating Dolgopolov and was a semifinalist at the Australian Open, falling in five sets to Djokovic. In February, he was runner-up to Roger Federer after beating Djokovic in the semifinals. Murray has beaten a current world #1 seven times in his career – Nadal three times, Djokovic two times, Federer two times. In his last tournament at Indian Wells, Murray lost in the opening match to Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in the second round.