Novak Djokovic’s neck felt much better, and his tennis looked much better, in a 6-2, 6-4 victory over unseeded American Tennys Sandgren at the Western & Southern Open on Tuesday that improved the No. 1-ranked man to 20-0 in 2020.
“Actually, I’m pleasantly surprised with the way I recovered and felt today — just overall, physically, but also with the neck, specifically, because that was a little bit of a concern,” said Djokovic, who will be eyeing his 18th Grand Slam title when the US Open begins next week. “Going back four, five days, I did struggle quite a lot.”
Canada’s Milos Raonic also advanced to the quarterfinals after a 6-2, 6-2 win over Britain’s Andy Murray. Raonic, from Thornhill, Ont., had 10 aces and won 88 per cent of first-serve points.
This is the first ATP tournament in more than five months because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and while Djokovic was treated by a trainer and played sluggishly in his opening match Monday, he took control from the outset against Sandgren and saved all four break points he faced. (CBC)