Djokovic defeats Murray to win 3rd consecutive title
Sydney, Jan 27: World number one Novak Djokovic won his fourth Australian Open title as Andy Murray’s hopes of a second major win ended in pain.
The Serb, 25, was the stronger man over three hours and 40 minutes, winning 6-7 (2-7) 7-6 (7-3) 6-3 6-2 as Murray struggled with blistered feet.
Djokovic secured his sixth Grand Slam title and became the first man in 46 years to win for three years running in Melbourne.
After losing an opening set he probably should have won, with five break points to none for Murray, the top seed turned the tables in the second by grabbing the tie-break.
The Scot had been in charge but was disrupted when serving at 2-2, a feather floating down onto the court following a missed first serve, and after removing it he promptly double-faulted and smacked a forehand wide.
He won just one more point in the tie-break as Djokovic took control to level after two hours and 13 minutes of action.The physicality of the contest appeared to be taking its toll when Murray then required treatment for blisters at the changeover.
He failed to capitalise on 0-40 at the start of the third and that proved to be the decisive moment as he began to grimace between points, clearly struggling to move freely.
It took two hours and 52 minutes of absorbing but rarely thrilling tennis for the first break of serve to arrive, and it went to Djokovic.
A thumping forehand into the corner set him on the way at 4-3, and despite saving two break points from 0-40, Murray could not resist any longer and netted a forehand.
Djokovic went on a run of eight out of nine games as he moved two sets to one up and the Briton’s serve unravelled, the double-fault count rising to five after just two in his other six matches in Melbourne.
Unhappy with the umpire for not clamping down on shouts from the crowd, and with his movement hindered, Murray cut a dispirited figure as Djokovic powered towards another major win.
In marked contrast to his opponent, the Serb was relishing the closing stages and romped towards match point, one delicious drop shot verging on the cruel.
Djokovic wrapped it up on serve when Murray netted a backhand and did a jig of delight on court before heading over to celebrate with his support team.
With six Grand Slam victories, he matches the likes of Boris Becker, Stefan Edberg, Don Budge and Jack Crawford in the all-time list - and there could be plenty more to come.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 27 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 27 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 28 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST
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