Published: Sun, October 14, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Brilliant Djokovic extends winning run with Shanghai title

Brilliant Djokovic extends winning run with Shanghai title

Croatia's Borna Coric celebrates his victory over Roger Federer at the Shanghai Masters on 13 October 2018.

"I thought he was better, I think he had more punch on the ball".

He exited the US Open in the last 16 at the hands of unheralded Australian John Millman, ranked 55th, and only made the quarter-finals at Wimbledon.

Djokovic played his 1,000th career match against Zverev and holds an impressive 827-173 win-loss record.

"I wasn't - I feel like - playing as well as I'm playing today", he warned.

And few would now bet against the Wimbledon and Flushing Meadows champion with the ATP Finals in London approaching, his ruthless efficiency having sapped Coric's energy as the final wore on.

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Djokovic's data is obviously still better, at 87.8% and 30.0%, respectively (117.8% combined), and unsurprisingly he's the favourite to take the title.

"I did everything I meant to do on my end", the 31-year-old Serb, chasing his 32nd Masters title, said.

Coric described Djokovic as a close friend.

The 31-year-old is in imperious form and this was his 18th ATP victory in a row as he came through against the highly-rated Croatian 6-3 6-4 for his fourth title of the year.

A miss-hit Federer forehand gifted Coric the opening break of the second set for a 2-0 lead, before Coric pulled off an excellent lob and smashed an ace down the tee to move clear at 5-3.

The 21-year-old saved three match points to hold serve in the ninth game before Djokovic served out to clinch his fourth title of the season. Statistically, he's very strong indeed on hard court, holding 83.2% and breaking 26.9% (110.1% combined) in the last 12 months, and that Federer win put him over the 110% combined hold/break mark. "I got off to a bad start in both sets".

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