Djokovic Makes History At Australian Open
Djokovic defeated Andy Murray 7-6(5), 6-7(4), 6-3, 6-0 for the third time in a final at Melbourne Park to clinch his eighth Grand Slam championship crown. Djokovic moves into equal-eighth place with Andre Agassi, Jimmy Connors, Ivan Lendl, Fred Perry and Ken Rosewall on the all-time list for most major titles.
It was only fitting that Emerson presented Djokovic with the trophy. "I'm so privileged and honoured and grateful to be standing here for the fifth time, to be in an elite group of players, with legends of our sport out here watching," said the Serb.
Djokovic also denied Murray in the 2011 and 2013 Australian Open title matches. It was Djokovic’s 50th match win at the prestigious tournament.
The 27-year-old Djokovic won his first major title at the Australian Open in 2008 (d. Tsonga) and followed with three successive victories from 2011-13. He has won 32 of his past 33 matches at Melbourne Park.
Murray has now finished runner-up at the Australian Open four times. No player in the Open Era has ever lost three Australian Open finals before winning the title. Murray had also been denied in 2010 against Roger Federer.
"It's been my most consistent Grand Slam throughout my career, I just haven't been able to win it," said Murray in his runner-up speech. "We put in a lot of hard work to try and get back in this position after what was a difficult year last year. Unfortunately, we couldn't quite do it tonight, but I'm a little bit closer than I was a few months ago and we'll keep working hard to try and get there. I'll try and come back next year and have a slightly different outcome in the final."
An enthralling first two sets on Rod Laver Arena took two hours and 32 minutes. Murray looked to have wrestled the initiative when he then broke for a 2-0 lead in the third set. However, Djokovic switched gears and as Murray faded fast, the Serb won 12 of the last 13 games to clinch victory in three hours and 39 minutes.
The 27-year-old Murray has now lost five matches in a row against Djokovic, with his last victory over the Belgrade native coming in the 2013 Wimbledon final. The Scot was attempting to win his third Grand Slam championship; he won his first against Djokovic at the 2012 US Open.
Murray dropped to a 2-6 record in Grand Slam finals. His victories at the 2012 US Open and 2013 Wimbledon have also been countered by losses at the 2008 US Open (l. to Federer) and 2012 Wimbledon (l. to Federer).