Wimbledon, England, Jun 22 : Novak Djokovic has started another winning streak.
The second-seeded Serb beat Jeremy Chardy of France 6-4, 6-1, 6-1 Tuesday to open his Wimbledon campaign, his first victory since his 43-match winning streak and perfect start to the season ended in the French Open semifinals.
After a two-week break, the 24-year-old Serb said he's ready to kick off another run of success.
“When this streak ended in Paris, it was kind of a relief as well because it's been a very, very successful five, six months for me, but very long as well and exhausting,” Djokovic said. “I've played so many matches.
“So I needed some time to relax and I'm happy to see that I'm playing well again, that I'm mentally really fresh to have more success.”
Djokovic didn't play any grass-court warm-up tournaments after Roland Garros, but he didn't show any sign of rust against the No. 54-ranked Chardy.
The Serb dropped just two points on serve in the first set and 11 in the entire match. He saved the only break point he faced.
In the match before his on Centre Court, six-time champion Roger Federer was almost as dominant on serve, losing 12 points.
“It is definitely one of the most dominant matches regarding the serve,” Djokovic said. “Especially on the grass court, you need the serve. You need to have the accuracy, efficiency. You need to get a lot of free points in order to put pressure on your opponent.”
With the streak over, Djokovic is back to sharing the spotlight with his three rivals at the top of the men's game: Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray.
The four reached the semifinals in Paris and are expected to do so again at Wimbledon. If it happens, Djokovic will face Federer, while Murray will meet the top-seeded Nadal.
Djokovic, a two-time Wimbledon semifinalist, said Federer and Nadal were favorites but that he is more confident than ever of winning the grass-court Grand Slam.
“It's true there is a different approach to this year's Wimbledon from my side because I'm playing, I think, best tennis of my life in the last six months,” he said.
“That's why confidence-wise, I believe in myself much more on the court and I know I can perform well, equally well, on this surface as I do on the other ones.” AP