2022 in Review: Novak Djokovic tops Yoshihito Nishioka in Paris


The defending champion Novak Djokovic made a winning start at Roland Garros. Novak earned his 82nd victory in Paris following a 6-3, 6-1, 6-0 triumph over Yoshihito Nishioka in an hour and 58 minutes. Djokovic played on a high level, dictating the pace with his forehand and leaving the opponent far behind on serve and return. The Serb struggled a bit on the second serve but defended five out of six break chances to keep the pressure on the other side. Nishioka failed to follow the rival’s numbers, dropping 57% of the points in his games and experiencing eight breaks of serve from 18 opportunities offered to world no. 1. Novak forged the advantage in the shortest and extended exchanges, needing only an hour to wrap up sets two and three and seal the deal within two hours on Court Philippe-Chatrier.

Novak Djokovic made a winning start in Paris.

Djokovic had to dig deep in the encounter’s opening game, facing three break points and erasing them to avoid the setback. Novak fended off the third with a forehand drive-volley winner and closed the game with an ace for 1-0. Nishioka served well in his first service game and kept Djokovic’s return under the radar in game four to lock the result at 2-2 with a rare ace. The Serb created a break chance in game six and used the opponent’s double fault to seize it and open a 4-2 gap. Novak cemented the lead after deuces in game seven and created a set point on the return in the next one with a forehand winner. Yoshihito denied it and closed the game to reduce the deficit and extend his chances. The Serb wrapped up the first part of the match with a service winner in game nine for 6-3 in 50 minutes. Djokovic scored three straight breaks in the second set to open a 5-0 gap and settle into a perfect rhythm.

Nishioka pulled one break back in game six after Djokovic’s forehand drive-volley mistake to avoid a bagel. Novak remained perfect on the return in the second set and grabbed it after the rival’s drop shot error for 6-3, 6-1 in an hour and 26 minutes. What he missed in the second set, Djokovic delivered in the third to seal the deal in style! He held at 30 in the first game and broke a left-hander with a beautiful volley winner at the net in the next one for 2-0. The Serb denied a break point in the third game with a forehand down the line winner and closed it with a service winner to build a 3-0 advantage. Yoshihito fended off break points in the fourth game before Novak seized the fifth following the opponent’s loose backhand for 4-0. Djokovic held at love in game five and grabbed a break at 15 in the next one for a bagel and a place in the second round.

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