Djokovic cruises, Berdych bounces back at Finals
Updated: 2014-11-13 12:05
Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns the ball to Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland during their tennis match at the ATP World Tour finals at the O2 Arena in London November 12, 2014. [Photo/Agencies]
LONDON - Novak Djokovic lost the first two games of his match against Stan Wawrinka. After that, there was no stopping the world No. 1.
The top-ranked Serb stayed calm, withstood the early assault from the third-seeded Swiss, and then crushed him 6-3, 6-0 at the ATP Finals on Wednesday to close in on the coveted year-end No. 1 spot.
"I thought he played very well the first two games. But I wasn't frustrated. After that, it was a really amazing performance," Djokovic said after extending his unbeaten run indoor to 29 matches.
The two-time defending champion is in blistering form this autumn, and his game is perfectly suited to the O2 Arena's center court, where he has dropped just five games in two matches.
"I'm not worried," Wawrinka said. "All the players who faced him recently have lost in two sets."
Djokovic will be guaranteed to finish top of the rankings for the third time in four years if he wins his final round-robin match at the elite tournament against Tomas Berdych. He has two wins in Group, A while Berdych posted his first victory against debutant Marin Cilic. Before the last round of matches, all four players can still make it to the last four.
Wawrinka, who had dominated the Serb en route to his Australian Open triumph earlier this year, opened confidently, putting Djokovic on the defensive by dictating from the baseline.
Helped by some superb backhands, he converted his third break point in a tight first game that lasted seven minutes, then held for a 2-0 lead after hitting an excellent crosscourt pass.
But Wawrinka's momentum didn't last long. While Djokovic stayed focused, his opponent's game suddenly went missing as the Serb won the next five games _ a run that included 11 consecutive points.
Wawrinka saved a set point in the eighth game with a good passing shot. But Djokovic never looked back after that, losing only seven points in the second set as Wawrinka was overwhelmed by the sheer pace of the two-time defending champion.