Novak Djokovic moves to 1-0 in the Stan Smith Group at the ATP World Tour Finals. He opens his campaign in London with a quick straight sets win over Kei Nishikori in just 65 minutes.
Djokovic Starts Fast
The top seeded Serb opened the match on serve and cruised through his opening service game with a pair of aces. In Nishikori's first service game, it was apparent that the 8th seed would be in for a long night. Djokovic would quickly see two break points with Nishikori able to fend those off and push the game to deuce. The Serb would keep the pressure on though and come through on the third break point as the 8th seed hit an error on a ground stroke to give Djokovic a 2-0 lead. A love service game from Djokovic quickly piled onto the lead at 3-0. Nishikori saved himself from a bigger hole with a lovely down-the-line winner to stave off a break point in the fourth game. He would eventually hold for his only game of the set at 3-1. Djokovic finished the set with two more simple service holds and another break of the Nishikori serve to take the opener 6-1.
For the set, the top seed won 16 of 19 points on serve without facing a break point. Nishikori was eaten alive on his first serve with Djokovic taking seven of 11 points off the 8th seed. Nishikori didn't help himself as he only got in his first serve 44 percent of the time. That allowed Djokovic to get a look at 14 second serves from the Japanese star. The Serb won half of those points.
No Rest For The Wicked In Second Set
The second set started horribly for Kei Nishikori. With the 8th seed serving, Novak Djokovic again sees a double break point in a Nishikori service game. This time, Djokovic takes the break on the second try to open the set 1-0. Perhaps sensing his imminent demise, Nishikori played one of his better games off the Djokovic serve in game two. Some nifty ground strokes from Nishikori helped him work to deuce twice, but ultimately is the world number one who held for a 2-0 lead. Nishikori would win his lone game of the set in the third game.
Djokovic remained relentless as Nishikori missed an opportunity to push the Serb in the fourth game on a botched shot into the net. Djokovic hits an ace and helps himself to a 3-1 lead. It was gloom and doom in the next game after Nishikori looked on his way to his first easy service hold. He led 40-15 before the Serb ran off four straight points to score another break of serve as Nishikori hit a backhand into the net to give Djokovic an insurmountable 4-1 lead. The top seed would close out the match with another break on a fantastic return of serve for the 6-1, 6-1 victory.
Following the match, Djokovic stated the obvious that he felt good will all aspects of his game against Nishikori, "I was feeling very comfortable on the court, feeling like I could get most of the balls back. I served efficiently. I mixed up the second serves as well. Didn't give him the same look twice. I always tried to change it. The tactics worked very well."
Nishikori was not pleased with his display, but conceded that Djokovic is playing at another level than most players right now. The 8th seed said he hopes to rebound, "He played unbelievable tennis. I'm very ashamed with this score, but I have two more matches."
For the match, Djokovic absolutely dominated Nishikori in all facets of the game. He took 30 of the 53 points played off Nishikori's serve. He also won 30 of his 39 service points without facing a break point and tallied five aces. The win pushes Djokovic to 79-5 on the season.