Djokovic thrashes Lajovic
FORMER world No.1 Novak Djokovic showed signs of a return to form with a 6-0, 6-1 thrashing of fellow Serb Dusan Lajovic in the Monte Carlo Masters first round yesterday.
It was an impressive performance from the 30-year-old in his first match since splitting from coach Andre Agassi and starting to work again with long-time former coach Marian Vajda.
Djokovic is ranked 13th in the world after lengthy spells off the court with a right elbow injury that he said left him unable to even “impersonate a tennis serve”.
“The pain was a huge factor that was affecting my overall state, my mind,” Djokovic said.
“A lot of things had to be left aside, compensated because the elbow was not healed. “But today, you know, (I’m) pain-free.” Djokovic has been training with Vajda for 10 days in the run-up to the tournament, having originally parted ways with the Slovak after last year’s Monte Carlo Masters.
“I’m very happy as he (Vajda) is more than a coach. He’s more like a brother, a father,” he said.
“The reality is I’ve played six or seven matches since July. I’m lacking matches and a bit of confidence on court. But I’m looking ahead.”
Earlier, Japan’s Kei Nishikori fought back from a set down to see off Czech 12th seed Tomas Berdych and reach the second round.
In a battle of two former Grand Slam finalists, Nishikori raced through the final two sets to progress with a 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 victory. – AFP