In Novak Djokovic's words: 'Like Roger Federer, I can play aggressive and defensive'



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In Novak Djokovic's words: 'Like Roger Federer, I can play aggressive and defensive'

The 19-year-old Novak Djokovic was eager to chase big goals after a breakthrough run in 2006, kicking off the next season with a title in Adelaide. Heading to the USA for the opening Masters 1000 events of the year, Djokovic lost in the final in Indian Wells to Rafael Nadal, avenging the defeat in the quarter-final in Miami to advance into the last four.

There, Djokovic ousted Andy Murray for the second time in a row in the same round, reaching the second consecutive Masters 1000 final. Novak played on a very high level from start to finish, scoring a 6-1, 6-0 victory in 63 minutes and sprinting into the title clash.

Djokovic lost 12 points in seven service games, fending off all three break chances, stealing almost 60% of the return points, taking five breaks from nine opportunities and sealing the deal in no time. Serving at 41%, Murray couldn't stand a chance against the returner of Novak's caliber, staying on five winners and spraying more than 20 unforced errors.

The Briton lost ground in the longer exchanges, dropping 11 straight games.

Novak saved three break chances at 1-1 and took five points in a row to avoid an early setback. He broke Andy in the very next game following a forehand error from the Briton, opening a 4-1 gap after a hold at love and securing another break to move closer to the set.

Serving for it, Novak blasted four service winners in game seven to close the opener in style, dominating in every segment and looking determined to repeat that in set number two. Things went from bad to worse for Murray who gave the serve away in the first game of the second set.

Djokovic never looked back, firing four winners in the sixth game to seal the deal and produce another thrilling victory during the "Sunshine double." Praising his game, Novak mentioned Roger Federer as another player capable of competing on a high level while attacking and defending.

"I'm an all-round player with different styles. It's always good to have a game like mine to change the pace and change the rhythm whenever I want. It's good to have this. Roger Federer does, he can play aggressive, he can play defensive, he can go to the net.

He can change all the time, so it's good to have. I'm working on the implementation of serve & volley but it's not easy. I'm a baseline player and have to work more on that. I expected a different match against Andy; he's a great competitor and a very talented player.

I didn't expect to beat him 6-1, 6-0 in the semis but I'm delighted. I will try to win the title, although it will not be easy against Ljubicic or Canas. Ivan and I were sharing coach from September 2005 until Roland Garros 2006. I know him pretty well, we have practiced a lot and he is my good friend," said Novak Djokovic.