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Novak Djokovic dismisses Alexander Zverev to close in on ATP semifinals

14 November 2018

Novak Djokovic sent out a warning to his rivals at the ATP Finals on Monday, brushing aside big-serving John Isner 6-4, 6-3 to launch his bid for a record-equalling sixth ATP Finals title in style. He made a lot of unforced errors which helped me to win.

From there Djokovic won the next three games, dropping only one point, as he wrapped up his second win of the week.

"The match was great". "I had three breaks of serve of John which is sometimes mission impossible, but I managed to be at the right place at the right time". The merciless Djokovic held serve before breaking Isner once more with an inch-perfect backhand passing shot on match point. "When you serve well, also it accelerates through the court".

Zverev needed to serve well as he battled to stay in the set, hitting close to 80 percent of his first serves and firing seven aces.

Croatian No. 5 seed Cilic now faces an uphill task to qualify from the group with two matches left to play.

Pleased to see Ronaldo watching tennis, Djokovic, who was wearing black and white, jokingly said, "I had colours of his club on my attire tonight".

Since the start of Wimbledon, he has now won 32 out of 34 matches.

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Earlier, Zverev had come from a break down in both sets to defeat Cilic 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-1).

The 31-year-old was assailed by claims he had lost his hunger for success and was past his best after injury and personal issues threatened to derail his career in 2017.

The one break Djokovic converted in the first set, at 2-2, was a cross-court forehand return victor which stranded Isner.

The last time Novak Djokovic played at the O2 Arena he suffered a chastening defeat at the hands of home hero Andy Murray which confirmed the end of his dominance at the top of the men's game.

"The court is hard", said Zverev. And it's very high-bouncing as well. Following his resurgence over the last few months, which has seen him win 24 of 26 matches - while exhibiting a 118.7% combined hold/break percentage - he looks like he's getting towards his best levels from years gone by, which is extremely ominous for the rest of the tour.

Zverev saved a pair of set points with an overhead smash and a bullet serve, but Djokovic wouldn't back down and a double-fault from the German finally surrendered the set.

Novak Djokovic dismisses Alexander Zverev to close in on ATP semifinals