Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic have played some big matches this year, including the US Open final where Murray won his long-awaited Slam, so their round robin match at the World Tour Finals was heavily anticipated.
Murray came out strong, and put immediate pressure on Djokovic’s serve.
He made his opportunity count, and broke Djokovic straight away, using his great defensive abilities to stay in the point.
It was all one-way traffic at first. Everything seemed to be going Murray’s way.
Murray easily held at love for a 3-1 lead with a line-clipping forehand.
Even the netcord was working against Djokovic.
But shots like this one didn’t help either.
Murray worked his way back into points that looked all but won for Djokovic.
Still, Djokovic held serve and forced Murray to serve out the set. But not before the obligatory awkward camera angle on the changeover that makes the players look like they’re sitting directly next to each other.
Murray used his low slice to set up a great backhand passing shot.
Murray held at love and took the first set, 6-4, much to the delight of his girlfriend, Kim Sears, and his mom, Judy.
Djokovic started out the second set with a love hold of his own, showing off his dexterity at the net.
Another unlucky netcord and persistence from Murray created more pressure on Djokovic’s serve at 1-all. Djokovic was getting increasingly frustrated.
But Djokovic held serve for 2-1. He punished a Murray short ball with a beautifully angled forehand.
Djokovic wasn’t the only one getting frustrated. Murray was annoyed with himself for missing opportunities on Djokovic’s serve early in the second set.
Momentum began to shift in Djokovic’s direction. He worked hard to get to break point for 4-2 on Murray’s serve.
Now it was Djokovic’s turn to produce dazzling shots, including a defensive backhand down-the-line winner as Murray was serving at 2-5.
Murray held for 3-5, but Djokovic served out the set at love to even the match at one set all.
In the deciding set, Djokovic picked up where he left off, and earned three break points on Murray’s serve at 1-all.
Djokovic forced Murray into an error to get the break for 2-1, thanks to a strong forehand return.
Murray wasn’t ready to give up. He held serve for 2-3 after facing a Djokovic break chance.
Djokovic showed off his amazing court movement to put away a point after stumbling.
Djokovic hit an uncharacteristically bad backhand return on a chance to go up 5-2, which helped Murray hold serve for 3-4 instead.
Buoyed by his two strong service holds under pressure, Murray earned a chance to break back. He stopped play after he thought a Djokovic backhand was wide on break point. His bravery was rewarded. He was back in the set.
At 5-all, Djokovic broke again for a chance to serve out the match. He was simply reading Murray’s serve too well.
Not so fast! Murray showed quick thinking for 15-40 as Djokovic tried to serve out the match.
Djokovic calmly saved them both, and a final backhand error from Murray clinched the 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 win for the World No. 1.
Djokovic celebrated as he moved to 2-0 in his round robin group, good for first place in Group A.
If you missed any of the action today, you can catch up by visiting our World Tour Finals Day 3 Liveblog.