Australian Open 2016 champion Novak Djokovic has progressed through to the third round of the French Open after downing Belgian Steve Darcis in straight sets on Thursday, 7-5, 6-3, 6-4.
The Serb suffered a few lapses that led to breaks, but quickly restored order. He opened with 3-0 lead before Darcis fought back to level. The top seed grabbed the first set on his third break/set point in the 12th game.
In the second set Djokovic claimed an early break and gained a two-set advantage.
The two had traded breaks once in the third set, before Nole converted another break point in the seventh game and sealed his third win in as many meetings with Darcis.
“I’m pleased to get the job done in three sets, but there were things I definitely didn’t like in my game today,” Novak said. “Too many unforced errors from the first or second shot in the rally. But, credit to Steve for playing a lot of variety and mixing up the pace. Very low slice. He’s very quick, and he anticipates the play very well. The matches will get tougher and it’s kind of expected at the beginning that you are a bit rusty on the court. Hopefully things will get better.”
Stats: aces (4-3), double faults (4-5), winners (29-23), unforced errors (42-25), total points won (109-94).
Novak recorded a routine victory on Suzanne-Lenglen Court in two hours and 15 minutes, setting up a match against world no.66 Aljaz Bedene in the next round.
The 26-year-old Ljubljana native defeated Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta in five sets.
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