Djokovic impressive in first match on grass
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World No.1 Novak Djokovic played his first competitive match on grass of the year when he defeated Gilles Simon 6-1, 6-2 in just 47 minutes at The Boodles on Thursday.
“It was great, tennis-wise. It was a fantastic match and luckily we could play for an hour or so because the weather was very unpredictable and we didn’t know whether it was going to rain or not,” said Djokovic. “It is still a preparation period for all of us. We’re all getting ready for next week.”
Djokovic had not played since Roland Garros, when his 41-match winning streak, stretching back to January, was snapped in the semi-finals in Paris by Roger Federer. “It was a long run and it was a run that I definitely didn’t expect; to have that many wins with no losses but it’s really about having the right mental approach and I was really trying to stay focused and stay dedicated to each match that I played,” said Djokovic. “Seven titles is already an incredible achievement for only half a year and I played a great tournament at Roland Garros. Unfortunately I lost in the semis finals but I played a great match against Federer. Since then I was taking some time off and preparing for grass.”
Djokovic will be seeded second at Wimbledon next week and said he was looking forward to the Championships. “In my opinion it is the most prestigious and the most important tournament in our sport because of its history, it is tradition and I think it’s the most watched tennis event in the world.”
David Nalbandian eased past Richard Gasquet in the second match on Thursday with a 6-3, 0-6, 10-5 in a Champions’ Tiebreak.
The final match of the day was left uncompleted after rain halted play with David Ferrer leading Alexandr Dolgopolov 61.
Andy Murray, fresh from his AEGON Championships at Queen’s Club earlier this week, will play a match at The Boodles on Friday against Viktor Troicki, starting at 2.30pm.