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Just how good is Novak Djokovic?

The Roar The Roar 29/01/2016 David Lord
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The way undisputed world number one Novak Djokovic played against Roger Federer in the first two sets in last night’s Australian Open semi in Melbourne was almost flawless.

The scoreline was 6-1 6-2, taking just 54 minutes – Djokovic made just six errors, Federer 22. Djokovic won 56 points and Federer won 27.

One way traffic.

But Federer is not only one of the greatest players of all-time, winner of a record 17 Slams, and the undisputed crowd favourite, he also found a way to get back in the fight.

As Djokovic said in the post-match conference, “he raised his first serve percentage, I didn’t do much wrong, but he took command of the rallies”.

Federer won the third set 6-3 in 45 minutes as the rallies increased, with both playing so many unbelievable shots that brought the packed house to its feet.

Vintage tennis.

Watching in the stand were two Australian legends in Rod Laver and Ken Rosewall. But this was a vastly different game to what they played in the 1950s and 1960s where the racquets and balls were hugely inferior to today.

It was a damn shame the roof took 11 minutes to close after the third set with rain around. One got the feeling Federer’s newly-found momentum took a hit.

Serbia's Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his semi-final match against Switzerland's Roger Federer at the Australian Open. © Issei Kato/REUTERS Serbia's Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his semi-final match against Switzerland's Roger Federer at the Australian Open.

He would far rather have continued having won the third set, but that never happened.

The fourth set was evenly contested, but Djokovic always looked in control, and in what seemed inevitable he broke Federer in the eighth game to serve out the match 6-1 6-2 3-6 6-3 in a gripping two hours and 19 minutes.

Djokovic awaits tonight’s second semi between Andy Murray and Milos Raonic, the first Canadian to reach the Australian Open semis.

Murray’s been there done that, reaching five Australian Open semis, that includes four finals.

He was beaten in the 2012 semis by Djokovic, by Federer in the 2010 final, and again by Djokovic in the 2011, 2013, and 2015 finals.

But there’s an awesome stat surrounding Djokovic since the start of last year’s US Open.

He has won 37 of 38 matches, losing only to Federer in the qualifying rounds of the ATP World Tour tournament. He beat Federer in the final

In those 38 matches, Djokovic has won 16 of 17 against the world’s top 10.

But the more burning question is will the 34-year-old Roger Federer hang up his racquet soon?

No way Jose.

In his post-match conference, he said, “You guys (media) think I’m old, but I can still go four or five hours – no trouble”.

Long may that be the case.

Serbia's Djokovic and Switzerland's Federer shake hands at the net after Djokovic won their semi-final match at the Australian Open. © Tyrone Siu/REUTERS Serbia's Djokovic and Switzerland's Federer shake hands at the net after Djokovic won their semi-final match at the Australian Open.

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