BNP PARIBAS OPEN 2013
Djokovic Blitzes Tsonga To Reach Semis
Indian Wells, U.S.A.
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic notched his 22nd straight win in style on Friday at the BNP Paribas Open, blitzing the eighth-ranked Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 6-1 in 54 minutes to reach the semi-finals. The Serb dropped only five points on serve and broke Tsonga four times from nine opportunities, improving to a 10-5 career lead over the Frenchman.
"I tried to pay attention to my game," said Djokovic. "I really didn't care about how my opponent felt. I just tried to focus on the job I needed to do, and my performance was really good. I served really well and used the shots around the court well, and that's what matters for me.
"When it was important, I didn't allow him to come back to the match. I didn't allow him to have an opportunity to believe that he can maybe have a break back and get back into the match. So that was very important for me to stay mentally committed throughout the whole match."
The 25-year-old Djokovic is unbeaten since the 2012 BNP Paribas Masters in Paris Bercy, where he lost to Sam Querrey in the second round. Since then he has won titles at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals (d. Federer), the Australian Open (d. Murray) and Dubai (d. Berdych).
Djokovic is bidding to win his 14th ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title by lifting the trophy at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden for the third time. He triumphed previously in 2008 (d. Fish) and 2011 (d. Nadal), while also finishing runner-up in 2007 (l. to Nadal).
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In the semi-finals, Djokovic will face Juan Martin del Potro, against whom he has an 8-2 head-to-head record. "Del Potro is a powerful hitter from the back of the court, big serve," said Djokovic. "He moves really well for his height. US Open champion, so he knows how to play on the big stage."
The 27-year-old Tsonga dropped to a 12-4 match record on the season. The Frenchman won the Open 13 in Marseille (d. Berdych) and was also a quarter-finalist at the Australian Open, falling to Roger Federer in five sets.
"I'm disappointed about my feelings today and the whole match. I made a lot of mistakes. It was tough for me to keep the ball in the court. Not because he put me under a lot of pressure. I don't know how to explain that, but it was a day for me without sensation. Everything I tried to do, I missed it.
"The positive thing is that I won some good matches. It was the first time for me here in the quarter-finals, so it's always good to have a better result here."