Novak Djokovic's Arthur Ashe Stadium Debut Delight

Novak Djokovic debuted on the world's largest tennis stadium in 2007

by Jovica Ilic
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Novak Djokovic's Arthur Ashe Stadium Debut Delight
© Matthew Stockman / Staff - Getty Images Sport

With four titles and almost 90 victories, Novak Djokovic is one of the most decorated players at the US Open. The Serb celebrated most of his New York triumphs at Arthur Ashe Stadium, debuting on the world's largest tennis stadium in the 2007 third round.

Novak came to New York as one of the favorites, prevailing over Radek Stepanek in the second round and setting the third-round duel with another young gun, Juan Martin del Potro. It was Djokovic's first Arthur Ashe Stadium experience, and he enjoyed every minute.

The Serb beat the Argentine 6-1, 6-3, 6-4 in an hour and 42 minutes, playing well and moving into the last 16. Novak tamed the teenager's first serve easily, securing six breaks from as many chances. On the other hand, world no.

3 defended five out of six break points, controlling the scoreboard and emerging at the top without spending too much energy.

Novak Djokovic debuted at Arthur Ashe Stadium 16 years ago.

Djokovic fired 31 winners and played well at the net, mixing up his game and leaving the rival behind.

The Serb made a furious start, taking the opening set in 21 minutes after outplaying the Argentine on serve and return. Novak kept the strong pace in the second set, breaking a teenager two times and clinching it with a return game at 5-3 to build a massive advantage.

Raising his level a bit, del Potro created four break chances at 2-2 in the third set. Djokovic denied them, brought the game home and delivered a break a few minutes later that sent him 4-2 in front. Novak served for the victory in the ninth game and lost serve for the first time, keeping the young gun in contention.

However, the Serb secured another break at 5-4 to seal the deal and earn his first Arthur Ashe Stadium triumph. "My first match on Arthur Ashe Stadium was a fantastic experience. I tried to be focused on the biggest tennis stadium in front of such a massive crowd.

I was the favorite, and I had to remain calm and focus on my game. I played well on hard in Indian Wells, Miami and Montreal, and expectations are high here in New York. It was not easy to recover from that marathon second-round clash against Radek Stepanek, and I did that, playing well today and hoping for more in the next round.

I tried to be aggressive and control the pace, seeking a quicker match and hoping to preserve energy. I never played against del Potro before; he is very talented and had nothing to lose against me," Novak Djokovic said.

Novak Djokovic Arthur Ashe
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