Novak Djokovic seeks Roger Federer’s Major record at Roland Garros


With nine trophies since 2008, Novak Djokovic is the most decorated player in the Australian Open history. Novak debuted in Melbourne in 2005 and claimed only three games against Marat Safin. The Serb returned to Melbourne a year later and failed to pass the first obstacle again. Novak fell to a former Stanford University Paul Goldstein 6-2, 1-6, 6-3, 6-2 in two hours and 28 minutes. Djokovic squanders ten out of 13 break chances and gets broken six times from 19 opportunities offered to his rival. Paul made a better start and claimed the opener 6-2. Novak bounced back in set number two and controlled the pace on serve and return. Instead of building on that, Djokovic lost ground in sets three and four to propel the rival over the finish line. It was Novak’s last defeat in the opening round at Majors, never leaving the tournament before the second round in the following 64 trips to the most notable events!

Novak Djokovic has not lost in the first round at Majors since 2006.

Roger Federer leads the field with 65 consecutive Majors without the earliest exit, starting in 2003 and keeping the streak until the end of his career! Djokovic made a winning start at the Australian Open and will catch Federer if he avoids the first-round loss in Paris in May. Novak returned to Rod Laver Arena after two years and delivered a 6-3, 6-4, 6-0 victory over Roberto Carballes Baena in two hours and two minutes. Novak has been dealing with a left leg injury since Adelaide, stretching a bit today but keeping everything under control in a straight-sets triumph. Carballes Baena fought well in the opening two sets, dropping serve once in each and fading from the court in the third to push world no. 5 into the second round. Novak fired nine aces and defended all three break chances. The Serb fired 41 winners and 21 unforced errors, taming his strokes nicely and challenging the rival to repeat that. Djokovic grabbed 47% of the return points and converted them into five breaks from nine opportunities.

The Spaniard stayed in touch in the first part of the opening set before the Serb grabbed a break at love in game six with a forehand down the line winner. Djokovic served well after that and landed an ace at 5-3 to claim the opener in 42 minutes. Novak served well in the second set and waited for return chances. A nine-time champion stole the rival’s serve in the seventh game after a forced error and delivered two holds at love to wrap up the set 6-4 and extend his advantage. Carballes Baena had nothing more left in the tank, failing to maintain his level and experiencing a bagel in the third. Novak turned it into a one-person affair, taking 24 out of 28 points and sailing over the finish line 18 years after playing his first Australian Open match. Djokovic broke in the first game with a volley winner at the net and landed another at 2-0 to extend the advantage. The Serb placed a return winner for 5-0 and held at love in the next one with a service winner to advance into the second round. 

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