'Novak Djokovic always had a great team around him', says former Top 5

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'Novak Djokovic always had a great team around him', says former Top 5

World No. 3 Novak Djokovic has made a strong start to his grass-court season, ousting Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-2 6-1 at the Giorgio Armani Tennis Classic at the Hurlingham Club. Djokovic pressured Auger-Aliassime from the start and claimed the first break in the first game of the match.

Auger-Aliassime had a chance to quickly recover from a break down, but Djokovic saved three straight break points in the second game and opened up a 2-0 lead. In game four, Auger-Aliassime squandered another two break points and Djokovic took a 3-1 lead.

Auger-Aliassime paid the price for wasting five early break points, as Djokovic hit his second break in game seven for a 5-2 lead. Holding a double lead, Djokovic had no trouble closing out the set on his serve in game eight.

After easily losing the first set, Auger-Aliassime managed to serve in the first game of the second set. However, that was it for Auger-Aliassime as he did not win a single game in the rest of the match. In the second set, Djokovic broke Auger-Aliassime in the third, fifth and seventh games, not allowing the Canadian a single break point.

On Wednesday, Djokovic's rival Rafael Nadal also kicked off his grass-court season. Just two hours earlier, Nadal defeated Stan Wawrinka 6-2, 6-3 at the Hurlingham Club. Both Nadal and Djokovic decided not to play any ATP events before Wimbledon.

Instead, they decided to play the Hurlingham exhibition and use it as a warm-up for Wimbledon.

Davydenko discusses Djokovic's status

Nikolay Davydenko believes Novak Djokovic has a great chance to close the gap in the all-time Grand Slam title race at the upcoming Wimbledon Championships.

The current World No. 3 is set to take part in the upcoming Wimbledon Championships, while being a major doubt for the US Open due to rules around unvaccinated travelers to the United States. "He [Novak Djokovic] is getting older now, it will be interesting, but I am sure he wants to win a few more Slams.

He has a good chance in Wimbledon and at the US Open, provided that he plays. Depends on his preparation," Davydenko said. "We were in Rome and he was my partner for the warmup before the match. I was surprised with the way he controlled the ball – I was hitting really good balls and each one came back.

He moved really well too. Novak always had a great team around him, which helped him to last at the top for so long," Davydenko said.