Novak Djokovic cruised into the third round of Wimbledon as he claimed a straight sets win over Kevin Anderson. Aiming for his sixth title at the All England Club, the defending champion put in an ominous showing as far as his rivals are concerned, running out a 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 winner. He will now face either Italy's Andreas Seppi or American Denis Kudla in the next round.
Djokovic's defence got off to an imperfect start on Monday as he dropped the opening set en route to victory over British wildcard Jack Draper. But, rather than his opponent, the biggest threat to the Serbian's supremacy in this one seemed to come from the uncertain conditions underfoot on Centre Court.
As has been the case for many players so far at The Championships, Djokovic struggled to get to grips with a slippy court as he repeatedly tumbled early doors. However, he slowly began to find his stride before a break in the eighth game handed him a lead that was comfortably served out for the first set.
Anderson's confidence appeared to take a hit from that setback and he narrowly survived a break scare in the first game of the second set as a result.
But the South African could not keep his opponent at bay for long, Djokovic going a break ahead in the seventh game with a sumptuous lob from deep before claiming another to see out the set. The top seed wasted little time in wrapping up the match from there, claiming the crucial break of a third set that lasted just 32 minutes in its eighth game.
Anderson recovered the first of three break points with two impressive serves but could do little with a blistering return that put him on the back foot before losing the third. And Djokovic's victory was wrapped up in the subsequent service game as his opponent hit a return long to bring the match to a close after an hour and 41 minutes.
Data slam: Flawless Djokovic sets out stall
Speaking to the BBC after his win over Anderson, a confident Djokovic shared his belief that he had put in a "flawless" showing.
And, while his demanding coach Marian Vajda is unlikely to agree, at times this performance was about as close as you can get to such lofty descriptions. Djokovic ended the match with just six unforced errors to his name as he dealt with one of the biggest hitters on tour by continually prolonging rallies with his vast range of shots.
Clearly it is going to take something impressive to dethrone the Serbian, who has no intention of letting his Wimbledon crown go unless it is dragged away from him.
Djokovic – 25/6
Anderson – 24/26
Djokovic – 9/1
Anderson – 11/4
BREAK POINTS WON
Djokovic – 4/8
Anderson – 0/0