Novak Djokovic secured his second successive double in China with victory over Argentinean Juan-Martin del Potro in the finals of the Shanghai Rolex Masters on Sunday.
The 26-year-old Serb, who lost the number one rank to Spaniard Rafael Nadal this week, overcame Del Potro 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (7-3) in a final which lived up to expectations in terms of quality.
Coming from last week’s Beijing Open victory over Nadal, Djokovic endured a less flamboyant second set against Del Potro, who saw off the Spaniard on Friday, restoring dominance in the decider to clinch his second title within a week. The triumph increases Djokovic’s ATP Tour successes to five in 2013.
Del Potro’s semi-final victory over Nadal ensured him a place at the London O2 arena for the ATP World Tour Finals in November.
But in a fierce Sunday’s challenge it was the Australia Open defending champion who produced a double break to seize control of the opening set before the Argentine leveled in the second and lost a the tie-break in the third set.
Del Potro saved two match points in the 10th game of the decider, but had nothing more to offer went the second-seed stepped on the gas pedal to claim the tie-break.
Djokovic raced through the first set as his opponent took time to settle in, winning just eight points from 14 in his first serve, which got worse with his second.
The Serb broke the Argentine in the second and fourth games before his opponent finally registered his first point at 5-1. Djokovic finished off the set when the 5th seed’s return went wide.
The momentum soon changed in the second set. After holding serve, Del Potro produced two break points in the second game, taking his chance at the first attempt with a great return that brushed the line. He then held serve to win the set with a love game in the ninth.
Djokovic had two match points at 5-4 in the tenth game of the decider, wasted the first with a long return and was then deceived by the kick of Del Potro’s serve. The former world number one made the most of opportunities in the tie break and held his nerves to take his 15th Masters title.