Two-time Madrid Masters champion Novak Djokovic could not seek his third Caja Magica title in 2018. Novak played well in the opening round against Kei Nishikori but hit the exit door after a 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 defeat to Kyle Edmund in an hour and 42 minutes!
It was the season's sixth loss in 12 matches for Djokovic, struggling to find his A-game following an ongoing elbow injury. It was a career-best win for the Briton, earning it after saving four out of seven break chances, including all three in the deciding set that proved crucial.
Novak raised his level after losing the opening set. However, those break opportunities he wasted in the decider cost him greatly. On the other hand, Kyle broke Novak at love in game nine to seal the deal and march into the third round for the first time at the Masters 1000 level.
After being sidelined in the second set, Edmund won two more points than Djokovic. We have to give him credit for improving his backhand in the final set and returning from 40-0 down on serve at 2-2. He gained confidence that carried him through the rest of the match.
The Briton hurled a forehand winner to kick off the encounter with a break before the Serb pulled it back in the next game after Kyle's forehand error. Serving from the sunnier side of the court, Novak hit a double fault to suffer a break and fall 3-2 down before Kyle held with ease in the next two service games to move 5-3 ahead.
Novak Djokovic lost to Kyle Edmund in Madrid 2018 to extend his poor run.
A backhand return winner sealed the set for the youngster in game nine. He broke Novak for the third time and looked strong to grab the first triumph over the better-ranked opponent in four clashes.
Djokovic raised his level in set number two to take advantage in the rallies and push Edmund's backhand to the limits. The Serb lost just five points behind the initial shot and stole the rival's serve in games one and seven for a commanding 6-2 set after a service winner in that eighth game.
The returners won just one point in the opening four games of the final set. The decisive moment came at 2-2 when Kyle found himself 40-0 down on serve. He saved the first two break chances with service winners, and Novak wasted the last one with a backhand error, which would prove very costly.
Serving at 3-4, Djokovic sprayed a forehand error to drop serve and allow Edmund to serve for the victory. Interestingly, Novak did not lose a point on serve before that game in the decider. Also, he still gave it to Kyle despite landing every first serve in.
Cold as ice, Edmund blasted four winners in the ninth game to celebrate a massive win and earn his career-best result at the Masters 1000 series.
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