Novak Djokovic dominated Rafael Nadal to cruise to a 6-3, 6-2, 6-3 win and lift a record seventh Australian Open title at the Rod Laver arena in Melbourne on Monday.
There were early signs of Djokovic bringing his A-game for the contest with an early break in the first set, the first time that Nadal was broken all through this tournament. There was no respite for the Spaniard as his relentless opponent kept coming at him.
Nadal did manage to hold his serve twice from there but this was vintage Djokovic, going for the paint with incredible precision and wasting no opportunities to close down points. The speed of his ground-strokes and his returns were simply too good.
That Nadal was below par was summed up by an air swing while setting himself up for a booming forehand – it drew the collective groan from the Rod Laver Arena, who had turned up in capacity to cheer the 17-time Grand Slam winner.
He wrapped the first set 6-3 and it was downhill from there for Nadal. Djokovic continued to keep the pressure on his opponent and the second and third sets became a mere procession as Djokovic became the first player to go home with seven titles from the first Slam of the year.