Published: Fri, November 16, 2018
Sport | By Joe Gonzales

Novak Djokovic shows no signs of slowing up in London

Novak Djokovic shows no signs of slowing up in London

Earlier Alex Zverev scored an important win to set him up for a run to the semi-finals when he defeated Marin Cilic 7-6, 7-6 in the same group.

Zverev played a great defensive forehand slice to set up a chance to finish the point with a backhand lob, but his attempt drifted just wide and Djokovic held on for 5-4.

Several leading players, including Djokovic, have questioned the timing of the ITF's flagship event, coming at the end of a gruelling 11-month season and Germany's Alexander Zverev said this week he would not play in the showpiece finals.

Isner said it had been "very very difficult" to focus on the match after learning of the death of his close friend and former strength coach Kyle Morgan. His friend, Kyle Morgan, a former National Football League player who had worked the American player, died unexpectedly on Monday night, and Isner posted a moving tribute on Instagram that ended: "You were a friend, the best friend I could ever ask for".

Novak Djokovic moved closer to a place in the semi-finals of the ATP Finals as the world number one dispatched Alexander Zverev 6-4, 6-1 on Wednesday.

Nevertheless, following his 6-4 6-1 win, the seventh straight-sets singles result in seven matches, Djokovic insisted: "I think there is a lot of quality in the new generation". The top seed will also reach the semis if Cilic beats Isner in three sets. He has won many Masters 1000 events already, I think three in his career, which is quite impressive.

Despite the match likely to be dominated by servers, I still only make a first set tiebreak around a 40% chance, making the 5/6 with the Sportsbook about this eventuality a rather short price.

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In the second set, Djokovic broke for a 3-1 lead and then lost just one more point as he remained on track to equal Roger Federer's six titles at the tournament.

"If I made the break, it goes the other direction a little bit", Zverev said. So, it's more hard than in other tournaments, so everybody has to kind of find their rhythm in the first match.

Cilic wobbled briefly, handing the break back with a woeful game, but struck again with some bludgeoning groundstrokes and kept his composure to claim the win.

"You have to give him credit for that, for qualifying for World Tour Finals two years in a row".

"Unfortunately today hasn't been great in terms of that", said Djokovic, when asked about his health.

The ATP Finals is contested by the eight players who have accumulated the most ranking points over the season and is in a round-robin format, with the best four players reaching the semifinals. It was the first match all week that went to three sets.

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