Queen’s | Djokovic slips and slides into the Quarters
Serbia’s Novak Djokovic showed more signs of returning to his previous domitaing form when he brushed aside fifth-ranked Grigor Dimitrov 6-4 6-1 to reach the quarter-finals of the major pre-Wimbledon warm up event at Queen’s Club, the Fever Tree Championships.
Djokovic, the 12-time Grand Slam champion who was out for six months with an elbow injury has made strides back to his pre-injury days over recent week, always gad the edge over his Bulgarian opponent despite slipping and sliding on the still verdant grass court.
This was a great test, playing against one of the top players in the world, a player that I guess prefers this surface the most Novak Djokovic
Djokovic took full advantage of a below par serving performance from Dimitrov, capitalising in the 10th game when the second seed went behind 0-40 and while he saved two set points, the 2014 champion double faulted on the third.
From that moment the match the unseeded Novak Djokovic playing on a wild card ticket, took full control, securing two more service breaks en route to the easy victory sixty-six minutes of play.
“I’m still kind of finding my form,” the 31-year-old Djokovic, who is seeking his first Queen’s Club title, said. “This was a great test, playing against one of the top players in the world, a player that I guess prefers this surface the most.”
The Serbian, currently ranked 22, faces Adrian Mannarino for a place in the last four, The Frenchman having defeated hs compatriot Julien Benneteau 7-6(4) 6-4.
Meanwhile British hopes were extinguished by Nick Kyrgios who followed hup his first-round win over Andy Murray, by eliminating the current British No.1 Kyle Edmund 7-6(3) 6-7(5) 6-3.
He smashed 32 aces past the Briton in a match lasting two hours and 11-minutes in what proved a hard-hitting contest in which the Australian, ranked 21, produced his full array of shots, including a tweener lob as he approached the net, to win a point.
Edmund lost his focus briefly in the decider and as a result lost what was a close encounter between the two, in a contest which was marred by the profanity which Kyrgios used on more than one occasion, for which he made on apology when questioned by reporters during the compulsory post-match interview.