World No. 1 Novak Djokovic returned to his winning ways on Tuesday afternoon in Beijing and will now contest an intriguing second round battle against Canadian No. 2 Vasek Pospisil. Their only previous meeting took place in the Davis Cup semi-final tie last season, which Djokovic won.
The Serbian star advanced his unblemished record at the China Open to 20-0 with a decent victory against Guillermo Garcia-Lopez on Monday afternoon. Djokovic struck 67% of his first serve points and converted all the break point opportunities he had (6/6) to beat the Spaniard 6-2,6-1 in 63 minutes.
“I’m fighting for No. 1 in the world,” said Djokovic. “Of course, every tournament is important. This is already a huge motivation. I love competing. I love being on the court, being part of great tournaments like here in Beijing. Chinese people make me feel welcome, make me feel at home. This is definitely encouraging for me and for my motivation.”
“I did not underestimate my opponent definitely from the start,” said Djokovic. “I wanted to step into the court and dictate the play, dictate the rallies. I think I’ve done well. It was a bit of a sluggish start from both of us. We lost a lot of service games. Took a lot of time to get into the rhythm, used to the conditions. Generally it’s fine. I cannot complain about the performance.”
Djokovic’s opponent, Vasek Pospisil, who defeated Lukas Rosol 6-4,6-3 in 71 minutes on Monday afternoon. The Canadian served with a 65% accuracy rate in first serves and converted 3 of 7 break point opportunities.
This is just the second time that Djokovic and Pospisil cross paths on the professional circuit, with the Serb leading the series 1-0 with a Davis Cup victory on clay last season. The world No. 1 is always in confident form in China and will look to pressure the ailing Canadian en route to another relatively smooth victory.
Prediction: Novak Djokovic in Straight Sets