Novak Djokovic won his first US Open match in two years on the trot when he beat Alexandre Muller 6-0, 6-2 and 6-3.
The Serbian’s vaccination status meant that he could last tee off at the tournament in 2021. He then lost to Daniil Medvedev in the final, but the US government has since relaxed its Covid-19 regulations and he hit 32 winning shots against his French opponent.
“I enjoyed an excellent run-up to the game. Admittedly we were teeing off late, but I was very excited to step onto the course. It’s been a few years since I last played here, but it’s always a great privilege to be in action on the Arthur Ashe court,” said Djokovic.
With ex-pres. Barack Obama, who is watching the match from his pavilion seat, the winner of 23 Grand Slam titles won the first eight pots of the showdown and sent a clear message to his opponents: He undoubtedly has his 24th major title in his sights.
“I think I could have played better in the second and third set. I had to work harder for my points, but I’m happy with the mindset I approached the game with.”
Stefanos Tsitsipas, Taylor Fritz, Frances Tiafoe, Iga Swiatek and Victoria Azarenka are also through to the next round.
Novak Djokovic beats Alexandre Muller 6-0, 6-2 and 6-3
Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Milos Raonic 6-2, 6-3 and 6-4
Mackenzie McDonald beats Felix Auger-Aliassime 7-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4
Tommy Paul beat Stefano Travaglia 6-2, 6-3, 4-6 and 6-1
Taylor Fritz beat Steve Johnson 6-2, 6-1 and 6-2
Frances Tiafoe beat Learner Tien 6-2, 7-5 and 6-1
Casper Ruud beats Emilio Nava with 7-6, 3-6, 6-4 and 7-6
Roberto Carballes beats Holger Rune 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 and 6-2
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina beat Marcos Giron 6-4, 6-4 and 6-2
Dominic Thiem beat Alexander Bublik 6-3, 6-2 and 6-4
Danielle Collins beat Linda Fruhvirtova 6-2 and 6-0
Beatriz Haddad Maia beat Sloane Stephens 6-2, 5-7 and 6-4
Iga Swiatek beat Rebecca Peterson 6-0 and 6-1
Rebeka Masarova beat Maria Sakkari 6-4 and 6-4
Karolina Muchova beats Storm Sanders 6-4 and 6-0
Victoria Azarenka beat Fiona Ferro 6-1 and 6-2.