(September 1, 2013)FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – No. 1 Novak Djokovic cruised to an easy 6-0, 6-2, 6-2 win over No. 95 Joao Sousa or Portugal on Sunday night at the US Open.
Djokovic’s serve was broken only once, when he was serving for the match at 5-1 in the third set. Djokovic led in winners against Sousa 34-10.
Djokovic said that he’s working on his net play.
“I am not obviously as comfortable on the net as I am on the baseline, but I’ve been working on it,” said the Serb. “It’s part of my game that I still need to improve. I’m aware of that.
“It makes me happy that I have room for improvement, and I keep on spending hours and hours on the court and working on variety in my game. And serve, especially that part of my game. I want to try and get as many free points on the serve as possible.”
Djokovic moves into the round of 16 where he’ll take on Marcel Granollers of Spain who defeated the last US man left in the singles draw Tim Smyczek 6-4, 4-6, 0-6, 6-3, 7-5.
Smyczek was asked about being the last American left in the men’s singles draw.
“It was a cool feeling,” he said. “You know, got a little taste of maybe what John (Isner) or Sam (Querrey) or Andy (Roddick) went through for so many years, or James (Blake) sometimes ‑ just a little taste. Love to have more of it.”
With Smyczek’s loss there are no American men in the round of 16 at the US Open, the first time that has happened at a tournament that began in 1881.
“I think it’s tough being judged by just the Grand Slams,” said the American. “’Cause if you look at it, John has had an unbelievable summer. He won Atlanta; he finaled Cincinnati; he finaled Washington. He just had a rough match third round against Kohlschreiber here.
“I think to be judged on just the Grand Slams alone isn’t quite fair. But I do understand Grand Slams are what makes a career. I think you can expect that to change next year.”
In addition no one from the US reached the fourth round at any of the four majors tournaments in 2013.