Written by Michael Gillett (@michaelBG1212)
Novak Djokovic won his fourth title of the year as he cruised through the Shanghai Rolex Masters without dropping a set on the way. The Serb has now won an impressive 18 matches in a row and has only lost once since winning the trophy at Wimbledon in July.
His final opponent was Croatian young gun Borna Coric, who arguably had the most impressive week in China’s biggest city. The 21-year-old ranked 19th in the world won every single set on route to the final, including the biggest upset of the week: a 6-4 6-4 victory vs Roger Federer. More impressively, Coric prevented the Swiss maestro from breaking his serve at any point during the semi-final.
The Croat however found himself matched by the US Open champion Djokovic, who only dropped four points on serve through the entire first set. Coric managed to show a bit more resilience in the second set as he saved four break points to prevent Djokovic taking an early two break lead. Trailing 4-2, the Croatian earned a break point of his own, however, he couldn’t convert it. Despite an impressive performance overall, it took the world number three Djokovic four attempts to convert a championship point and win the title.
It is the fourth time the former world number one has won in Shanghai. Considering the extensive elbow surgery he underwent in February and an initial struggle for form, it is arguably his most impressive. His other wins included a 6-2 6-1 thumping of world number 5 Alexander Zverev, and a straight sets victory against Wimbledon finalist Kevin Anderson.
Elsewhere in the tournament it was a successful week for Britain’s Kyle Edmund. The 23-year-old made it to his second ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final, and progressed through the first three rounds in straight sets. Now at a career high ranking 14th in the world, Edmund dispatched Serbia’s Filip Krajinovic, Italy’s Andreas Seppi, and Chile’s Nicholas Jarry.
Jarry stunned world number 6 Marin Cilic in a second round three-setter, but Edmund was able to still to defeat the Chilean 7-6 6-3. The Brit eventually fell to Germany’s Alexander Zverev in the quarter final but only lost serve twice.
Next week see’s the tour head back to Europe, with the smaller 250 tournaments returning in Stockholm, Antwerp and Moscow.
Kyle Edmund is the top seed in Antwerp, but may have to overcome talents such as Richard Gasquet and Diego Schwartzman if he wants to continue his good run and win a debut ATP title.
Meanwhile Wimbledon semi-finalist and number 10 in the world John Isner tops the draw in Stockholm, and Marco Cecchinato will be number one seed at the Kremlin Cup in Moscow, which also sees the likes of in-form Danill Medvedev, and Australia’s Nick Kyrgios.