When and Where: The final of the ATP Masters 1000 clay-court event in Monte Carlo gets underway at 8 a.m. ET. Live TV coverage will be provided by the Tennis Channel. A live stream will be available via ESPN3. Live streaming coverage is also available, via a subscription to Tennis TV, through the tournament website.
Preview: Tennis' new great rivalry sees its latest installment on Sunday as Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal meet in the final of the Monte Carlo Masters.
While the Serbian has firmly grabbed the ascendency in the past 14 months, this is Nadal's house.
The world No. 2 has not lost at the Monte Carlo Country Club since 2003. Since then Nadal has won 41 consecutive matches as he has picked-up an incredible seven titles in a row. A Djokovic victory here would be a seismic shift ahead of Roland Garros.
The French Open is the only grand slam title that Nadal currently holds, having been defeated by Djokovic in the finals of Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and most recently the Australian Open in the past year.
A Djokovic win in Monte Carlo, in conditions perhaps best suited to Nadal, could have huge psychological implications for the rest of the clay-court swing that culminates, as ever, in Paris in early June.
Yet referring to the recent record between the two in head-to-heads, Nadal said he believes all the pressure is on Djokovic in the final.
My feeling is I have much less to lose than him, he said after defeating Gilles Simon in his semi-final on Saturday, according to the official tournament website. I have everything to win.
That's the most important thing. That's the only positive thing about losing seven times. The next matches, you only have to win. You go to the match knowing that the normal thing is lose but trying the best to change situation. That's what I'm going to try.
Nadal's 6-3, 6-4 win over Frenchman Simon means that the Spaniard has progressed to the final without the loss of a set.
Things have not quite been so smooth for Djokovic in Monte Carlo this week. There were serious doubts about whether he would even remain in the tournament after his grandfather passed away earlier in the week.
But to his enormous credit, Djokovic has overcome the emotional turmoil and defeated the dangerous Tomas Berdych as well as blustery conditions in his three-set semi-final win on Saturday.
But Djokovic realizes that Nadal will represent a step-up in class from anyone he has faced so far in this first Masters 1000 event of the clay-court season.
It will be the most difficult match for me in this tournament, said Djokovic, after securing progress to the final, according to the official tournament website.
He's the player to beat here. He's the player to beat on clay courts. He's the best ever in the history of the sport on this surface. It's the ultimate challenge.
I need to play well. I need to play well from the first to the last point. I cannot have ups and downs. I cannot afford that against Rafa. I'm aware of that. But why not believe that I can win?
Prediction: Why not indeed. Djokovic won on the two occasions the pair met on clay last year, in the finals of Madrid and Rome. But prior to that Nadal had won all their meetings on the dirt and he will be desperate to get back to that kind of dominance on Sunday.
Nadal's record in Monte Carlo and his performances here this week should make him favorite for Sunday's final. But the huge psychological factors that have been built up in this rivalry cannot be overestimated. Someone as good as Nadal does not lose seven in a row to anyone without issues in the mind playing an important part.
Yet if Nadal is going to start to turn around his succession of losses then, in Monte Carlo and with everything Djokovic has had to overcome this week, now is the time.