He was made to work for his first win of the season at the Monte-Carlo Masters, but as Novak Djokovic said “a win is a win”.
The world No 1 required two hours and 36 minutes to beat Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 in the second round of the ATP Masters 1000 event on Tuesday.
While the opening set was a straightforward affair for the Serb, the second set was a real scrap as there were seven consecutive breaks of serve as Kohlschreiber drew level.
However, Djokovic then broke in game one of the decider and eventually eased to his 850th win.
Open Era ATP match wins:
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) April 16, 2019
“It was a difficult match, there were lots of breaks (a run of eight straight during the second and third sets),” the 15-time Grand Slam winner said.
“There were lots of ups and downs. It was not the prettiest of matches.
“It was pretty rusty, but a win is a win. This was a tough first match of the clay season.
“I had to figure out how I needed to move, this kind of match can be expected. It was probably good for me to spend so long on the court.”
Coach lifts lid on Rafa.
German backs ace to shine.
Will Federer wait a year?
Sporting Chance to team with ATP.
LTA release impressive figures.
Nicolas Mahut unimpressed by Pique’s remarks.
Serena Williams is the GOAT, says Boris Becker.
Jo Konta on the ATP-WTA merger talk.
Andy Murray and Marcus Rashford chat…
Players ranked outside of \top 500 are to receive help.