Novak Djokovic kicks off Tokyo 2020 in style as world number one dispatches Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2 to remain on course for Golden Slam of four Majors and Olympic gold in one year
World number one Novak Djokovic safely negotiated the opening hurdle in his bid for a first Olympic gold medal by beating Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2.
Djokovic, who is looking to become the first man to win a Golden Slam of all four grand slam titles and singles gold in the same year, eased past his lowly-ranked opponent in just 61 minutes.
The Serbian, who added the Wimbledon title as his 20th Grand Slam victory in June, extended his unbeaten run to 19 matches in a match where after a sluggish start, he dominated his opponent for the rest of the match.
Novak Djokovic got off to a winning start at Tokyo 2020 by beating Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2
The match was played out in an empty tennis arena following Japan’s strict Covid protocols
Despite winning both sets by the same margin, Djokovic clearly got into his groove midway through the first set. In the early stages his rustiness was evident as he failed to take four break points against Dellien in the first two games alone.
But having hit his stride after a slow opening, Djokovic was imperious in the second set, hitting seven aces on his way to victory and losing just four points on his serve in the entire match.
Dellien, 28, is ranked 139th in the world and the gulf in class showed as Djokovic won almost twice as many points as the Bolivian in the match – 61 to 31. Dellien also failed to take a single break point off the world number one.
Hugo Dellien, ranked 139th in the world, was no match for the world number one on the day
Djokovic is trying to win the Golden Slam – all four Grand Slams and Olympic gold in one year
At the end of the match, Djokovic jokingly bowed to all sides of the stadium, which sat empty to due Japan’s strict Covid protocols imposed on the Tokyo 2020 games.
Djokovic, 34, has only won Olympic bronze to date and is seeking to emulate Steffi Graf, who in 1988 became the only player to complete the Golden Slam.
Having already won the Australian and French Opens and Wimbledon, taking Olympic gold would mean Djokovic only had the US Open in September left to complete the feat.
The Serbian now faces Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff, who beat Brazil’s Thiago Monteiro 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the second round.