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Australian Open 2019: Djokovic's long path towards the crown

Sujit Oommen
CONTRIBUTOR
Feature
98   //    17 Jan 2019, 17:57 IST

6 time champion Novak Djokovic
6 time
champion Novak Djokovic

Djokovic has just beaten Krueger from USA easily in a 6-3 6-2 6-2 victory. However, it seems that this is probably going to be the only easy match in his draw.

Today, he faces strong competition in a repeat of the 2008 Australian Open finals which was a defining point in both Tsonga and Djokovic's career.

Australian Open 2008 - Finals day
Australian Open 2008 - Finals day

If Djokovic were to get past Tsonga, his next opponent is one of the brightest attackers in the NextgenATP group- Shapovalov. The Canadian seems to be in the very good form the start of this season. This one will be a good treat for the fans, I'm sure.

Denis Shapovalov
Denis Shapovalov

Goffin- the popular small framed player from Belgium looks the most likely to be an opponent on the other side in the 4th round. Goffin is capable of producing some incredible tennis and is generally a very consistent player.

We also have to take into consideration that if Djokovic has reached this point he is probably going to be in the flow. So this one is going to be interesting.

David Goffin
David Goffin

Once the quarterfinals are on, the players are both diverse and extremely powerful. This will create some interesting players in the draw, but the frontrunner seems to be Japanese Kei Nishikori who came through the tall (very tall) Ivo Karlovic in a grueling 5 setter.

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Djokovic vs Nishikori
Djokovic vs Nishikori

Zverev might have had a poor showing in Grand Slams up to this point, but with each passing GS he seems to improve his game in the marathon matches and is showing both mature mental game and physical game.

Alexander Zverev who came through in straight sets today is on route to eclipsing the big guys this time around.


Djokovic and Zverev have had some great fights
Djokovic and Zverev have had some great fights

And of course, we have the usual suspects- Roger Federer defending his back to back AO crown at 37 years looks as sharp as ever and the fight for a deciding 7th AO crown between Djokovic and Federer would be a lovely battle. Then again we have the fighter Mr. Rafael Nadal who is on any one's list at any time when he is vaporizing opponents as we have seen these past two games.

The usual suspects to reach the AO finals
The usual suspects to reach the AO finals

However Djokovic, more than anyone knows how much it takes to win a Grand Slam, so competition is not anything new to this man. Let's see how this one pans out.

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Sujit Oommen
CONTRIBUTOR
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