Novak Djokovic has triumphed in a HEAD to HEAD Australian Open final with a 6-4, 6-2, 6-3 victory over longtime rival Andy Murray. The Grand Slam trophy was the second for Djokovic, who dedicated it to his home country: “This trophy is for my country Serbia!”
The Serb fired off 26 winners in the victory lasting just over two and a half hours a recent addition to his lethal shot making armory. Murray, losing finalist here a year ago to Roger Federer was denied in his third Grand Slam final after also facing Federer in the 2008 US Open title match.
"I congratulate Andy for two great two weeks," said Djokovic. "He's also played a final here before. We've known each other for a long time. "It was tough to play against him tonight. I'm sure he will have another chance with his talent to win a Grand Slam trophy.” Djokovic added: “I have the best team in the world, it’s an individual sport but it's the people on your team who are making you feel comfortable and help you to put your best effort on the court."
Djokovic and Murray, who were born within a week of each other in May, 1987, were playing for the first time in a Grand Slam; Djokovic improved to 5-3 in the series after losing their previous three meetings.
The Serb backed up the Melbourne trophy he won in 2008 when he beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, and now stands 25-5 in Melbourne and 10-0 this season.
The pair of HEAD racquet rebels needed 59 minutes to complete the first set, with Djokovic starting with a love game and ending as he broke the fifth-seeded Scot after earning a set point with a 39-shot rally. Djokovic stormed ahead to 5-0 in the second set. Murray saved a Djokovic set point in the sixth game to win his first game of the set for 1-5 before breaking Djokovic for 2-5. The Serb got the break back and won the second set a game later.
In the third, Djokovic began sensing the finish line, losing serve in the first game but breaking back in the second. The set featured breaks in four of the first five games. Murray played a heroic fourth game, saving six break points before Djokovic fired a winner passing the Scot for a 3-1 lead. Djokovic broke again for 5-3 and served out the victory a game later as Murray suffered a pair of forehand errors to end it.
Murray took heart in his game despite the loss. "Novak had an unbelievable event and deserved to win, I look forward to playing you again in the future. My team put in hard work, we didn't do it this time, but hopefully I can come back and have more chances in the future. I want to come back and try to win it."