Djokovic victorious in Melbourne
Novak Djokovic wrote himself into the record books as he defeated Britain's Andy Murray 6-7 7-6 6-3-6-2 in the final of the Australian Open in Melbourne.
The 25-year-old fought back from a set down to record his sixth Grand Slam win and in doing so became the first man since Rod Laver to win three successive Australian titles.
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While it was delight for the Serbian it was a night of severe disappointment for US Open champion Murray, who could have created history himself by becoming the first player to follow up a maiden Grand Slam win with another victory straight away.
In a pulsating one-hour eight minute first set both players were determined to take the initiative, and despite Djokovic having numerous break points he was unable to breach the staunch Murray defence.
With the score delicately poised at 6-6 the match went into-tie-break, and Djokovic was made to pay for his failure to make the earlier break points as Murray took the tie-break 7-2.
The loss of the first set seemed to hit Djokovic hard, and he had to show all of his powers of recovery to save the first game of the second set after finding himself 40-love down.
The match then followed the pattern of the first set as both players refused to give an inch, and with neither man relenting it again went into the tie-break.
This time it was Djokovic who was victorious as he took the tie-break 7-3 to level the final at one-set each.
With Murray having to receive treatment for blisters, doubts over his fitness began to show, and Djokovic sensing the opportunity took the initiative. After the set reached 3-3 the world number one was finally able to secure the break he craved, and after holding his serve he broke Murray again to take the third set 6-3.
Murray knew he would need to find a second wind if he was to match the legendary fitness of his opponent, but with Djokovic now looking extremely confident it began to look a real uphill battle.
After breaking Murray in the fourth game Djokovic went on, despite a late wobble on serve, to secure the historic win and set down a marker to his opponents over the coming year.
Djokovic is rated as 7/4 to back up his win in Melbourne with victory at the French Open, with Murray 1212/1.
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