Novak Djokovic beats Gael Monfils to land Eastbourne title ahead of Wimbledon

Posted July 03, 2017

The Serbian broke his normal pre-Wimbledon practice regime to accept a wild card at the Aegon International event in Eastbourne, where he claimed his 68th tour title by beating Gael Monfils 6-3 6-4.

However, it was in vain as the top seed create a first championship point as Monfils committed another unforced error, and the Serb's good return of serve forced the second seed to commit another unforced error, which handed Djokovic his first grass court title outside of Wimbledon.

The three-time Wimbledon victor rarely plays in the week before the summer showpiece event and has had a disappointing year so far, but his performances at Eastbourne - where he didn't drop a set - will give him a massive boost heading into the Grand Slam tournament.

The Serb has struggled for form since completing the Career Grand Slam at the French Open previous year.

The Serb also confirmed that his friend and former player Mario Ancic would join his coaching team, along with Andre Agassi, at Wimbledon.

Djokovic leads the head-to-head by 13-1, with the most recent match coming in the US Open semi-final and Monfils' last victory dating as far back as 2004, which was their first ever meeting.

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Novak Djokovic made light work of promising Russian Daniil Medvedev to reach the Aegon International final on his debut in Eastbourne.

Equally familiar was the sight of Djokovic increasing his intensity as Monfils served to stay in the match at 4-5, taking victory at the first opportunity. "It is the best preparation I could have had this week for Wimbledon".

Djokovic said earlier this week that 2017 had been his toughest year in tennis.

"A lot of time spent on the practice courts, four quality matches".

The world number four is seeded second at Wimbledon on the strength of three titles at the All England Club but is looking for his first trophy since winning at Doha in January. He took a different direction in life, in the financial business, but I've dragged him back over to the sport. I think it was pretty high level from both of us. I was greeted, I was respected and for me it was just a phenomenal experience that I will definitely take with me to Wimbledon.

"Obviously in the first set he served very good".