Novak Djokovic upset by Taro Daniel in 3 sets at Indian Wells 2018

2018-03-12 01:52:39 GMT2018-03-12 09:52:39(Beijing Time) Agencies

Novak Djokovic was knocked out of the 2018 Indian Wells Masters on Sunday as he was downed 7-6 (3), 4-6, 6-1 by 25-year-old Taro Daniel in the second round, the Serb's first match since the Australian Open.

Despite gaining an early break, Djokovic was unable to see out the opening set and duly went behind after losing a tiebreak.

He leveled proceedings as Daniel lost some momentum in the second set, but Djokovic then fell apart in the decider and was eventually ousted in just over two-and-a-half hours.

The opening exchanges of a topsy-turvy match went well for Djokovic.

The former world No. 1 served for the set at 5-3 ahead, but after saving Daniel's first break point of the match, he couldn't repeat the trick on the second.

The Japanese player held his serve to draw level and then forced a tiebreak.

Daniel earned himself three set points in the breaker and took the first to leave Djokovic needing a comeback.

While Djokovic was some way from his best, Daniel still had to produce some superb tennis to keep ahead, and an inventive second serve saved him a break point at 1-1.

 

The 30-year-old kept the pressure on, though, and broke for 4-3 before producing two of his best shots of the match to consolidate, the first a brilliant get at the net and the second a thunderous forehand.

Two horrible errors from Djokovic at 5-4 ahead and serving for the set were indicative of his rustiness, but he finally sealed the second with a deep backhand.

He looked to have the momentum going into the decider and forced two break points in the first game of the third set.

However, he could not take either of them and was furious when Daniel held.

Things only got worse for Djokovic, as a string of unforced errors put him firmly on the back foot, and Daniel eventually won the third set easily to seal the biggest win of his career.

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