Former world number one Novak Djokovic continues his strong form at Wimbledon. The three-time Wimbledon champion played on the No.1 Court for the first time since losing to Sam Querrey in the third round last year. The 12-time Grand Slam champion is currently on a six-match winning streak after winning his second title of the year in Eastbourne.
Not many are speaking about Djokovic as a contender for the men's singles title but the world number four seeded twice at this year's Championships. He will have certainly made a few bookmakers change their odds after his emphatic performance. Djokovic eased past the Czech Republic's Adam Pavlasek, 6-2, 6-2, 6-1 to reach the third round at Wimbledon for the ninth consecutive year. The former world number one will play 29th seed Juan Martin del Potro or Ernests Gulbis in a tough third round match on Saturday.
Djokovic cruises in the first set
The former world number one in typical fashion broke the Czech's serve in the opening game of the match. He consolidated his break advantage with a hold to love. Pavlasek reached a career-high ranking of 72 back in January. However, he is struggling for form in 2017 as he has only won four matches on tour, including a first round victory at SW19.
Nevertheless, the world number 136 held serve to love in his next game but trailed 2-1. The three-time Wimbledon champion continued to employ the drop shot and produced some half volley winners, covering the net, extremely well. Moreover, the Czech continued to struggle on serve as the 12-time Grand Slam champion continued to produce strong forehands.
Pavlasek saved three break points in a lengthy eight-minute game and he held onto his serve by coming out on top in a long rally, producing a sweet backhand winner down the line, still a break down at 3-2.
The former world number one continued to remain untroubled on his serve, and he bossed the rallies, and he repeatedly came forward to produce half volley winners. Furthermore, Pavalasek was under pressure on his serve once more as he trailed 0-40 and the three-time champion broke serve to take a commanding 5-2 lead.
Djokovic served out the opening set to love with ease taking it 6-2 in just 30 minutes.
The Serb continues his good form in the second set to take an easy two sets to love lead
Both players held serve in the opening service games of the second set. However, there was a sense of inevitability as the former world number one came out on top in the longest rally of the match which was 24 shots. The Serb committed two unforced errors which allowed Pavlasek to save two break points but a third one quickly followed which Djokovic converted by producing a scintillating backhand winner down the line to lead 2-1.
The players engaged in entertaining long rallies, and both players did not hesitate to use the backhand slice, and both came forward to the net to finish off the points. The 22-year-old looks up to Djokovic as his idol, and he served well in some parts of the match to remain in touch with Djokovic.
The world number four continued to remain aggressive and he stretched out to a 4-2 lead with a hold to love. Moreover, the alarm bells were ringing for the Czech as he fell 0-30 on his serve but he got the game leveled at 30-30 with some good serving. However, Djokovic was in the zone, he moved the former top 75 player side-to-side in baseline rallies, and he gained the double break by producing a crushing backhand down the line, forcing the error from Pavlasek, leading 5-2.
The heat was sweltering on No.1 Court, and the three-time Wimbledon champion was ensuring that he was not staying on the court for a very long time. He served out to a two sets to love lead with ease, extending his lead to two sets to love, merely over an hour being played on the court.
Djokovic books his place in the third round in style
It was almost time for Pavlasek to check out of Wimbledon Village as the former world number one broke the Czech's serve by producing a trademark crosscourt backhand, leaving the Czech stranded at the net, breaking to lead 1-0.
The second seed consolidated the break with a hold to love, and the finishing line was in sight for the Serb. Pavalasek claimed his final game of the match in the third game of the third set as Djokovic produced a good drop shot but he retrieved it, and won the game, trailing 2-1.
However, in the following game, the 12-time Grand Slam champion was under pressure on serve for the first time in the match as he received a time violation at 40-40, which let him bother him. Pavlasek failed to take it as the former world number one served a big serve out wide to save it, and he held onto his serve to lead 3-1.
The errors continue to mount from the 22-year-old's serve as the former world number one gained the crucial double break, breaking for a 4-1 lead, which was unassailable. The three-time Wimbledon champion held onto his serve by producing a crushing backhand winner down the line.
Pavlasek was serving to stay in the match but he was unable to do so as he committed an untimely double fault to hand Djokovic his first match point. The Serb failed to convert it at the first time of asking but the second one quickly came as he set up a perfect one-two combination by hitting a forehand down the line sweetly, and followed it in with a volley winner at the net. Djokovic booked his place in the third round of Wimbledon as Pavlasek committed a double fault, hardly breaking a set with a 6-2, 6-2, 6-1 victory in just one hour and 34 minutes.
By the numbers
Pavlasek served more aces than Djokovic by producing five in contrast to Djokovic's four. However, the 22-year-old committed four double faults and 22 unforced errors. He was only able to win 58 percent of the points on his first serve, in contrast to Djokovic who won 80 percent of the points on his first serve.
The former world number one produced 26 winners and he was stunning on receiving as he won 51 percent of the points on the return. The three-time Wimbledon champion also won 72 percent of the points on his second serve, and the Serb is in a good position to go far in this tournament.