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By Rohit Sharma
Reads: 6,707, Comments: 1
In one of the most awe-inspiring performances of his Grand Slam career, Serbian Novak Djokovic overwhelmed Andy Murray to win the 2011 Australian Open singles title. With the win, Djokovic put an end to the disappointing series of Grand Slam losses that stretched to three years including two runner up finishes and several semifinal defeats.
Djokovic opened the match on a competitive note and held a couple of break points before squandering the opportunities to let Murray square off the score till 4-4. In the tenth game, Murray made some uncharacteristic errors and gave Djokovic the chance to break serve which he did and duly wrapped up the first set 6-4.
Assuring family and friends sitting in the players box of a comeback, Murray started the second set on a paradoxical note and lost two of his serves to give Djokovic a formidable 4-0 lead. Although the Scot got one of the breaks back, another service loss gave Djokovic a two sets to love lead.
The third set gave a hint of a shift in momentum when Murray pocketed a break of serve in the opening game. However, Djokovic bounced back immediately and outmuscled Murray with his power groundstrokes to level things up. The marathon fourth game ended Djokovic's favour when Murray lost control of his game despite serving exceptionally well. With such a cruise control of the match, Djokovic wasted little time and completed the 6-4, 6-2, 6-3 win in two hours and 39 minutes of play.
Djokvic hit a total of 26 winners to Murray's 21 and broke the Scot's serve six times in the match after benefitting from the 47 unforced errors committed by Murray.
This is Djokovic's second grand Slam singles title after his maiden win in Melbourne three years ago when he beat Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to clinch the historic victory. Djokovic helped Serbia win its first Davis Cup title last year in Deceber by winning both the singles rubbers and reached the finals in New York to finish the season in top 3.
Djokovic became only the second man after Juan Martin Del Potro in a Federer-Nadal dominated era to win a Grand Slam title. Since 2003 Wimbledon, only five men other than Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have managed a Grand Slam win. Andy Roddick (2003 US Open), Gaston Gaudio (2004 French Open), Marat Safin (2005 Australian Open) and Juan Martin Del Potro (2009 US Open) are the other four men to have won majors in the dominating presence of Nadal and Federer who share 26 Grand Slam titles between them since 2003.
Murray, who lost the finals last year as well, was attempting to become the first British man to win a Grand Slam title since Fred Perry in 1936.
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