Dominant Djokovic edges closer to Calendar Slam at the US Open

Jonathan Davies in US Open 03 Sep 2021
Djokovic is just five wins away from completing the Calendar Grand Slam (Corinne Dubreuil/ABACAPRESS.COM)

Novak Djokovic moved a step closer to the Calendar Grand Slam with a straight-sets victory over Tallon Griekspoor in the US Open second round.

Djokovic is aiming to become only the second player of the Open Era to win all four Slams in the same calendar year – and first since Rod Laver in 1969.

The world number one is now just five victories away from that incredible achievement following a commanding 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 success over Dutchman Griekspoor.

Djokovic, who hit 13 aces during the contest, took early command by breaking in game four of the opening set, which he secured with another in the eighth.

An early break by the Serb in the second set was cancelled out by Griekspoor, who reduced the arrears to 4-3.

However, the world number 121 was unable to subsequently hold and the 20-time Grand Slam winner doubled his lead.

It was all one-way traffic from there; two successive breaks helping the top seed set up a showdown with 2014 runner-up Kei Nishikori, who beat Mackenzie McDonald in five sets.

Like Djokovic, Olympic champion Alexander Zverev also advanced in straight sets, hitting 10 aces and dropping just four games against Albert Ramos-Vinolas.

Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini recorded 17 aces in his four-set win over Corentin Moutet, while Citi Open winner Jannik Sinner overcame world number 716 Zachary Svajda 6-3, 7-6, 6-7, 6-4.

Aslan Karatsev produced an inspired turnaround from two sets down to defeat Australia’s Jordan Thompson in a decider, but Wimbledon semi-finalist Hubert Hurkacz was ousted by Andreas Seppi, who is appearing in his 65th successive Slam.

Over in the Ladies’ draw, top seed Ash Barty hit 11 aces in her 6-1, 7-5 victory over Clara Tauson, while former winner Angelique Kerber and Olympic champion Belinda Bencic also prevailed in straight sets against Anhelina Kalinina and Martina Trevisan respectively.

Bianca Andreescu – champion in 2019 – made it nine successive wins at Flushing Meadows courtesy of her 6-4, 6-4 success against Lauren Davis.

Petra Kvitova hit nine aces as she defeated Kristyna Pliskova 7-6, 6-2. Through to round three for an 11th time, the former Wimbledon champion will play French Open semi-finalist Maria Sakkari, who beat Katerina Siniakova 6-4, 6-2.

Rising British star Emma Raducanu continued her momentum by overcoming world number 49 Shuai Zhang 6-2, 6-4, while former Roland Garros champion Iga Swiatek came from a set down before dominating the decider to see off Fiona Ferro 3-6, 7-6, 6-0.


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