Tennis

Sick Djokovic grinds out win over Zverev

Novak Djokovic has 834 Tour match wins in his storied career, but the latest, a 6-4, 6-1 rout of young German Alexander Zverev at the ATP Finals on Wednesday, will not be one for his scrapbook.

There were few moments to test the 02 Arena's crowd decibel-level monitor - a new gimmick this year - but despite not feeling well, Djokovic had too much guile for Zverev.

His ability to play the percentages and churn out wins in third gear has been a key component in his rise to one of the all-time greats and that was all he needed on Wednesday.

It was the 31-year-old Serb's second comfortable win in the Gustavo Kuerten group and, combined with Marin Cilic's 6-7(2), 6-3, 6-4 defeat of American John Isner later in the day, he sealed his place in the semi-finals at the year-ender for the eighth time.

Djokovic appeared to be suffering with a cold and grabbed a tissue from his pocket on occasions but, after some fierce resistance in the opening set, he ran away with the match.

The scrap is now on for second place, with Zverev targeting a win over Isner today to reach the semi-finals for the first time. He, Cilic and Isner can all still join Djokovic in the semis. - REUTERS

Tennis