Djokovic destroys Pouille to set up mouthwatering Australian Open final against Nadal
Serbian world number one Novak Djokovic blitzed Frenchman Lucas Pouille in straight sets in their Australian Open semifinal to move on to a mouthwatering showdown against old rival Rafael Nadal.
Number one seed Djokovic faced little resistance from the Frenchman, seeded 28th, as he eased past him 6-0, 6-2, 6-2.
The Serb, seeking his 15th Grand Slam title and a record seventh Down Under, took just 23 minutes to wrap up the first set against Pouille, who was comprehensively overwhelmed in his first semi-final appearance at a Slam.
The 24-year-old Frenchman finally registered on the scorecard at the start of the second set, but it was merely temporary respite as Djokovic, 31, soon broke him again as a nervy Pouille gifted him a game with a double-fault.
Djokovic was never troubled on his own serve as he took the second set 6-2 with less than an hour played at Rod Laver Arena.
The third set proved similarly straightforward as Djokovic took it 6-2 to set up the Sunday showdown with his great rival Nadal.
Ominously for Nadal, Djokovic has never lost a final in Melbourne. The Serb currently sits level with Roger Federer on a record six titles at the venue in the Open era, but will now have a shot at becoming the outright record holder.
However, the Spaniard, 32, himself has been in blistering form in the searing Melbourne heat, not dropping a set on his way to the final and dismantling rising Greek star Stefanos Tsitsipas in their semifinal on Thursday.Also on rt.com ‘Playing like Zeus’: Nadal powers past Greek youngster Tsitsipas to reach Australian Open final
Nadal also crucially seems to have put the injury woes that plagued him last season – and so often through his career – well behind him and appears in his best form in many a year.
Sunday’s final will be between two men with a collective 31 Grand Slam titles to their name, one of whom will edge closer to Federer’s all-time record haul of 20. It promises to be a cracker.