Djokovic defeats Cuevas 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 to succeed in French Open 3rd spherical
It’s a bit stunning that this was their first tour-level assembly provided that they’re only one yr aside and turned professional across the similar time. Novak Djokovic is trying a feat not but achieved on the ATP Tour – win every main a minimum of twice. The thirty-four-year-old from Serbia raised the coupe de mousquetaires in 2016 defeating Andy Murray in 4 units and reached three different finals (2012, 2014, 2015). The reigning Australian Open champion has had a standout season with 20 wins to simply three losses together with his second title of the yr on the grime in Belgrade.
Though presently ranked #92, Pablo Cuevas is a harmful opponent in any spherical, having reached a career-high rating of #19 in 2016. The thirty-five-year-old Uruguayan has six titles all on clay and earlier this month got here through qualies to succeed in the semis on the Geneva Open.
Djokovic served first, holding at love with an ace up the tee. Cuevas struck his first ace and held to 15 for 1-1 with a well-placed serve and an inside-in forehand winner.
Whereas each have been placing the ball from the beginning with authority, Djokovic fell behind 15-40 in his subsequent service sport as Cuevas dictated play from contained in the baseline. Djokovic saved a break level with an ace down the center however dumped serve when he netted a forehand and Cuevas did not consolidate the break following three unforced errors.
Again on serve at 2-2, Djokovic held simply to 15 with a deft backhand drop shot on sport level. Cuevas struggled however managed to carry for 3-3 behind well-struck forehands and serves. Djokovic opened the 7th sport with an enormous serve down the center and held at love with one other.
Cuevas, serving with new balls, missed 5/8 first serves and hit two backhand winners to avoid wasting break factors however succumbed on the third when his opponent ripped a forehand down the line.
The 18-time grand slam champion served for the arrange 5-3 and although he confronted triple break level following two forehand errors, pulled out two extra aces to clinch it 6-3. It was a hard-fought, well-played opening set as every participant dedicated barely greater than a handful of unforced errors.
Cuevas served first within the second and instantly got here below strain as he continued to overlook on his first serve. Djokovic continued to successfully make use of the drop shot, incomes a break level which he transformed when Cuevas whiffed an overhead.
Djokovic consolidated the break, holding to 15 together with his 5th ace for 2-0. Cuevas returned the favor, holding to 15 together with his 2nd ace for 1-2. Djokovic started serving higher, making 4/5 first serves as he held to 15 for 3-1.
Cuevas watched the set slip away as he dedicated 4 consecutive unforced errors to drop serve. Djokovic held at love and consolidated the break for a commanding 5-1 lead together with his 6th ace and a spectacular forehand drop volley on sport level.
Cuevas did nicely to disrupt his opponent’s momentum, hitting two winners off the bottom and a
candy forehand drop shot on sport level for 2-5. Djokovic missed 4/5 first serves together with a double fault however secured the set 6-2 when Cuevas missed the forehand return.
Cuevas served first within the third and although he opened with a incredible inside-out forehand volley, dropped serve behind a double fault and a netted backhand. Djokovic struggled mightily to consolidate the break as Cuevas continued to unleash off the bottom but managed to carry for 2-0 regardless of going through 5 deuce and two break factors.
Cuevas opened the third sport with an inside-in forehand and closed it with an outstanding crosscourt backhand for 1-2. Djokovic as soon as once more struggled to carry as his opponent refused to yield. The world #1 served an ace, a double fault, and confronted 5 deuce and two break factors but managed to carry after Cuevas mishit the backhand return.
Cuevas, resilient and undeterred, believed he had the instruments to threaten the highest seed as he extracted three consecutive unforced errors and held at love with an ace out huge.
Djokovic, decided to win in straights, amped up the serve and held to 30 for 4-2 with a colossal serve down the center. Cuevas returned the favor, holding to 30 for 3-4 with a double fault and his 4th ace.
Nearing the end line, Djokovic continued to serve nicely, placing one other ace and an enormous one out huge on sport level for 5-3. Cuevas was decided to carry and power his opponent to serve it out and with well-struck groundstrokes, spot serving, and one other ace, he did.
Novak Djokovic opened the 10th sport with a rare backhand overhead smash and gained the set and match together with his 10th ace. Although he defeated his opponent in straight units in somewhat over two hours, it was something however simple.
Whereas Djokovic hit 5 extra aces (10/5) he donated 3 double faults. They’d related numbers on winners/unforced: Djokovic tallied 32/22 whereas Cuevas produced 31/26. Each had good first serve percentages – Djokovic 68%, Cuevas 64% in addition to the proportion of factors gained on first serve – Djokovic 75%, Cuevas 64%.
Djokovic excelled at break factors transformed profitable 5/8 whereas Cuevas struggled to capitalize on the 9 he created, profitable only one. Djokovic additionally surpassed his opponent on essentially the most important stat – second serve factors gained, profitable 57% to his opponent’s 41%.
In the long run, the world #1 was too good when it actually mattered – break factors transformed – and that’s the reason the four-time Roland Garros finalist and 2016 champion is through to the third spherical on the French Open.