Djokovic blazes to Melbourne title

Serb beats Andy Murray in straight sets to win his second Australian Open and deny the Scot a first Grand Slam.

    Djokovic dedicates his win to Serbia as Murray looks on after a decisive Australian Open final defeat for the Scot [AFP]

    Third seed Novak Djokovic beat Andy Murray 6-4 6-2 6-3 to win his second Australian Open, dashing British hopes of a first men's Grand Slam champion in 75 years.

    Serbia's Davis Cup hero completely dominated the Scot, who came out flat and has now lost all three of his Grand Slam finals without winning a set.

    "I dedicate this title to my family, my brothers, my girl Jelena back home, my people that have been with me for so many years," an emotional Djokovic said on Sunday.

    "It has been a tough period for our people in Serbia," added Djokovic, who also paid tribute to the victims of the recent Queensland floods.

    "We are trying every single day to present our country in the best possible way, so this is for my country Serbia."

    Scorching

    Djokovic, who lifted his only previous major title in Melbourne three years ago, got off to a scorching start in energy-sapping heat supposed to favour fifth seed Murray.

    Relentless pressure forced a forehand error from Murray, giving Djokovic the first set against last year's Australian Open runner-up, who played with a tired look throughout a surprisingly one-sided match.

    Murray, rattled by noise from Djokovic's box and berating himself, began to unravel in the second set, screaming at his own coaching team: "Be quiet!"

    A fired-up Djokovic took a stranglehold on the final by ripping another big forehand down the line, a dejected Murray slumping in his chair muttering to himself in despair.

    Djokovic went for the jugular, breaking for 3-1 in the third set with a breath-taking backhand down the line, the Serbian pumping his fists and roaring with delight.

    Murray immediately broke back but Djokovic blasted a forehand cross court to go 5-3 up and finished the job with another crunching forehand the Scot could only dump into the net after two hours 39 minutes.

    Djokovic celebrated by throwing his racket, shirt and shoes into the crowd as a packed Rod Laver Arena went wild.

    Murray was bidding to become Britain's first male Grand Slam winner since Fred Perry in 1936.

    He lost the 2008 US Open final and last year's Melbourne final in straight sets, both times to Roger Federer.

    "I'll try to keep it together this year," said Murray, who had been reduced to tears by Federer last year.

    "I won't lose sleep over it. I want to try to win a Grand Slam but if it doesn't happen, it doesn't happen."

    SOURCE: Reuters


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