Novak Djokovic beats Rafael Nadal to win Qatar Open

By The Sports Xchange  |  Jan. 10, 2016 at 2:08 AM
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World No. 1 Novak Djokovic routed rival Rafael Nadal 6-1, 6-2 on Saturday to win the season-opening Qatar Open.

Djokovic erased memories of a quarterfinal exit in Doha last year, capturing his sixth consecutive ATP World Tour title and 60th overall at the tour level. He became just the 10th player in the Open Era to reach the 60-title milestone.

"I played very much perfect tennis," Djokovic said. "From the beginning, I hit every shot the way I imagined I would hit it. Those two sets give me a great feeling.

"It gives me a lot of confidence and satisfaction, particularly against Rafa."

The Serb and the Spaniard wasted no time in renewing their rivalry in 2016, but Djokovic cruised from the start.

Djokovic and World No. 5 Nadal met for a record 47th time on the ATP Tour. The series had been tied 23-all. Djokovic leads for the first time at 24-23. He has now won the past five matches against Nadal.

Djokovic closed out the opening after 31 minutes, firing 16 winners and four aces.

Djokovic continued to apply pressure on Nadal from the baseline with a display of aggression. He converted his third break point in the opening game of the second set and secured another break to all but seal the match at 4-1. He wrapped up the match after 73 minutes, striking a total 30 winners to just 13 unforced errors.

Nadal, who was competing in his 99th final, was bidding for his 68th tour-level title. The 2014 Doha champion also finished runner-up in 2010.


Roger Federer and Milos Raonic will meet again in the Brisbane International final at the Australian Open warm-up tournament.

Federer, who has been with flu-like symptoms this week, beat eighth-seeded Dominic Thiem 6-1, 6-4. The defending champion is one win away from his 89th career title.

Raonic defeated local player Bernard Tomic 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5) in the other semifinal.

Federer stopped Raonic in three sets in Brisbane in the final last year.

"It was my best match of the tournament. I hit the ball very well. I'm very excited to be back in the final -- it's special playing Milos again tomorrow," Federer said. "I've come here three times now and three times I've made the final, so I'm very happy."

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