Novak Djokovic will compete in his 13th Australian Open quarter-final following an impressive display at Rod Laver Arena on Monday. Novak took down the home favorite Alex de Minaur 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 in two hours and six minutes.
Djokovic played his best match since the beginning of the tournament, feeling no issues with his troubled left leg and leaving the Aussie miles behind. Novak was too strong on serve and return, sailing through his service games and keeping the pressure on the opponent all the time.
Feeling no issues while moving, the Serb reigned the court and controlled the pace with well-balanced strokes that took all the weapons away from his rival. De Minaur did not show much in front of his partisan crowd, struggling to pass Djokovic or mix his shots.
Novak never faced a break point, and Alex was far from that pace. The Aussie lost over half of the points in his games and got broken six times from 12 chances offered to the Serb. Novak reduced Alex to under ten winners and controlled the shortest and more advanced rallies to sail over the top and move into the last eight.
Novak Djokovic played on a high level against Alex de Minaur.
Novak dropped five points behind the initial shot in the opening set and delivered two breaks for a strong start. Alex stayed in touch in the opening four games before fading from the court for good, never looking like a serious rival and the 22nd seed.
The Serb broke at love in game six to open a 4-2 advantage and grabbed another return game at 5-2 after the rival's mistake to wrap up the opener in 35 minutes. With everything working his way, Novak played another rock-solid set, dropping six points behind the initial shot in set number two and pushing even stronger on the return.
Djokovic broke de Minaur in games two and four to build a 6-2, 5-0 advantage in no time and rattle off nine straight games! Alex avoided a bagel with a hold in game six before Novak fired a backhand crosscourt winner in the next one for 6-2, 6-1 in 75 minutes!
The Aussie looked like a junior in his service games, failing to find free points or move the Serb from his comfort zone. Novak delivered two early breaks and forged a 4-0 advantage, looking good to seal the deal in the next 15 or 20 minutes.
Alex avoided a bagel with a hold after deuce in game five and wished for at least some chances on the return. Instead, Djokovic produced another comfortable hold to open a 5-1 gap and force the rival to serve to stay in the match.
Novak created a match point in game seven with a volley winner, and Alex saved it with a powerful serve. The Aussie fired another to bring the game home and reduce the deficit. Djokovic held in game eight to seal the deal and move into the quarter-final.