Djokovic-Nadal showdown set for Melbourne Park

Federer still testing time

Novak Djokovic produced one of the great Grand Slam final performances to swat aside Rafael Nadal and become the first man to win seven titles at the Australian Open.

The first Grand Slam of 2019 sees world number one Novak Djokovic aiming for his third consecutive slam title, and seventh Australian Open.

In their last meeting at Melbourne Park seven years ago, the Serb needed a record five hours and 53 minutes to beat Nadal in the title clash in a match regarded as a classic.

At 31, Djokovic has time to chase down that record, with Federer winning the most recent of his 20 at the age of 37 at last year's Australian Open. Only Fred Perry and Ellsworth Vines knew each other better on a tennis court than do Djokovic and Nadal; they played 162 times in the late 30s, barnstorming around the United States, the UK, Caribbean and South America in high-grade exhibition matches, with the American winning 88-74. Clearly, he did not budge from there, producing 34 winners and only nine unforced errors Sunday. For starters, Djokovic is just 5-9 against Nadal in his career.

Djokovic left Nadal smirking or gritting his teeth or punching his racket strings, unable to compete at all.

He has now lost eight successive matches to Djokovic on hardcourts, his last win coming at the 2013 U.S. Open. If anything, the gap between him and the rest is growing right now. Then you have [Dominic] Thiem and [Alexander] Zverev, Roger [Federer] is probably going to play. To be standing now here in front of you today and managing to win this title and three out of four slams, this is a truly unbelievable.

Sony Ten 2 and Sony Ten 2 HD will provide live television coverage of the Australian Open in India.

Everyone has an opinion, and there's plenty of gray area when it comes to these often contentious debates, but strictly sticking to the stats, here are some notable numbers, starting with a list of the players with the most Grand Slam titles. Djokovic displayed incredible form throughout this year's edition of Australian Open.

Evenly matched as they were that night, this time was no contest. So, of course, did Djokovic, whose defense was impenetrable.

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No ball, no matter how well-struck, was out of Djokovic's reach.

The Spaniard, who lost 13 of the first 14 points in the match, never got into his stride against the world No. 1. A trend was established.

With two more breaks, Djokovic seized a two-sets-to-love advantage - and there was no way back for Nadal.

Nadal could make no headway on this day. Djokovic leads 27-25.

Nadal had marched through the bottom half of the draw without dropping a set for the first time.

The result was one of the most lopsided Grand Slam matches ever between members of the Big 3, surpassed only by Nadal's 6-1, 6-3, 6-0 victory over Roger Federer at Roland Garros in 2008.

It was 33 minutes until Djokovic dropped a point, with a forehand that hit the net. But so complete was Novak Djokovic's victory that talk about a mental block wouldn't be far off the target.

His domination of these two greats suggests that if he can stay fit and focussed, there are few in the men's game who can stop him.

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