Djokovic and Del Potro through in Shanghai

Andy Murray withdraws from season ending ATP World Tour Finals, as Novak Djokovic launches his Shanghai title defence.

    Djokovic and Del Potro through in Shanghai
    World number two Djokovic serves up a champion display against Spain's Marcel Granollers in China [AP]

    Top seed Novak Djokovic launched his Shanghai Open title defence in style, breezing past Spain's Marcel Granollers in a clinical 6-2 6-0 display on Wednesday.

    The Serb, who lost his world number one ranking to Rafa Nadal on Monday, needed some treatment on his right foot during the second set but it did not stop him from breaking his opponent three times to win at a canter.

    With my serve I didn't run too much. I was lucky in the tie-break because he made a few mistakes. I won a really tough match

    Juan Martin del Potro, Argentine tennis player

    Sixth seed Juan Martin del Potro overcame a slow start to beat German Philipp Kohlschreiber 3-6 6-3 7-6(4).

    Kohlschreiber, ranked number 23 in the world, served 22 aces and hit 50 winners against a sluggish del Potro.

    But the Argentine, who said he had been feeling ill, fought back to get an early break in the second set and get a grip on the match.

    "It was really tough for me," del Potro, who later withdrew from doubles, told reporters.

    "I couldn't run a lot. I think my serve helped me a lot to keep playing for the three sets because I made many aces.

    "With my serve I didn't run too much. I was lucky in the tie-break because he made a few mistakes. I won a really tough match." 

    France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga had a much easier start to his campaign as he brushed aside Pablo Andujar 6-3 6-2 in 65 minutes. 

    Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic, currently sixth in the race for next month's ATP World finale in London, also took a positive step towards sealing his berth by defeating Spain's Feliciano Lopez 7-6(5) 6-2.

    Murray withdraws 

    However one of the star competitors will not be making the season finale. Wimbledon champion Andy Murray has withdrawn from the World Tour Finals as he continues his recovery from back surgery.

    "I'm really disappointed not to be playing this year. I love playing in front of my home crowd, it's a great atmosphere," the British world number three said in a statement on Wednesday.

    Murray had surgery last month to clear up a long-standing back problem.

    Rafael Nadal, Djokovic and David Ferrer have already secured spots at the season-ending event, which is fought out between the top eight qualified players.

    The tournament runs from November 4-11.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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