Djokovic crushes Kuznetsov
Originally published on 22/01/15
The Serb made light work of the world No.88 as he powered to a 6-0 6-1 6-4 victory on Rod Laver Arena on Thursday.
After Roger Federer was taken to four sets by Simone Bolelli and Rafael Nadal survived a real scare as he dug deep to beat Tim Smycek 7-5 in the fifth set on Wednesday, by contrast Djokovic needed just 84 minutes to see off his opponent.
Kuznetsov upset David Ferrer at Wimbledon and beat Fernando Verdasco before taking a set off Andy Murray in the US Open third round last year, but he was no match for Djokovic, who dropped just five points on his first serve in the entire match.
The world No.1 won the first nine games as he raced through the opening set and established an early break on his way to winning the second. Kuznetsov offered some resistance as he broke Djokovic early in the third set, but he was helpless to prevent a straight-sets defeat as the Serb wrapped up a convincing victory.
“The first two sets definitely were great,” said Djokovic, who will meet either Fernando Verdasco or Go Soeda in the third round. “Overall I executed the game plan. Everything I intended to do, almost 100%, from every second in my game, serve, baseline play, aggressive shots and aggressive returns.”
A four-time champion in Melbourne, Djokovic believes a positive energy around the tournament has helped him perform well over the years.
"This is my most successful Grand Slam and the tournament where over the years I've performed my best tennis," he said. " think there are a few reasons why. Probably the fact that I enjoy the conditions of play. Even though last two years the courts have played faster, significantly faster than they were before, still I do enjoy being here in Australia.
"Some nice, positive, easy-going, sport-oriented energy going around. People appreciate the sport and make you feel good. Of course, it's the beginning of the year. It's the first big tournament so everybody comes fresh and motivated. I guess in this kind of package it's a combination of things that make me feel comfortable on the court here.”