Published: Tue, May 23, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Djokovic crushes Thiem to secure Zverev Rome final

Djokovic crushes Thiem to secure Zverev Rome final

It's awesome to see 10, 12 years ago, when he was only a boy going around with his racquet, and now we are going to play in the final of one of the biggest events in the world.

"I'm very happy with the way I played and my performance all week, I think today was one of the best matches I ever played", Zverev said. "He's going to stay only to a certain time, and then we'll see after that what's going to happen". Djokovic has clearly been playing better as the clay court season has gone on, and many thought he would reclaim the title here. He landed nearly 75 percent of his first-serve attempts and lost just six points on his serve in the first set. Also, Novak was sacked and pumped to not only beat Dominic but to send the clear message to the rest of the Tour that he is back, just in time before the second Grand Slam of the season in Paris.

While Agassi has not coached a top player before, Djokovic said his record as a player and spokesman of the game was enough to convince him.

Throughout the whole match, the German player, with Russian origins was dominant, and he controlled the tempo of the game, not allowing for much-experienced Serb to have any chance to approach and make a move on him.

Djokovic, the former four-time champion, was forced to finish his quarter-final over Juan Martin del Potro earlier in the day after their match was rained off late on Friday. "I am the most German that I can be". Djokovic had an 8-3 advantage in service winners and they hit 3 winners each from the field. "Sometimes just winning some matches, tough ones, even if in three sets, those are the most important matches".

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The 22-year-old is now ranked 11th in the world, but will return to the top 10 when the rankings are updated on Monday. By comparison, Djokovic has appeared in 30 such finals. In game 3 Thiem suffered another huge blow, he was broken from 40-0 up and Novak was now just 3 games away from the win.

Thiem nearly allowed Nadal back into the match but managed to cancel out three break points to go into a 5-3 lead and he broke again to take the match when Nadal sent a forehand long.

But he could not recapture his brilliance against Germany's Zverev, a 20-year-old who didn't have to face one break point in a final lasting one hour and 23 minutes.

Djokovic continued to struggle for consistency and fell further behind when a missed forehand gave Zverev his second break to go 2-1 ahead in the second set.

Bertens committed 31 unforced errors to Halep's nine.

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