Novak Djokovic chokes Stanislas Wawrinka

The step was too high for Stan Wawrinka. He lost 6-2 6-2 in the round of 16 of the Masters 1000 in Rome to Novak Djokovic for his first “big match” since his return to the circuit at the end of March.

The score is a little harsh. Wawrinka (ATP 361) was not unworthy against the Serb, five-time winner of the tournament and against whom he remained on two victories. But that was before her double surgery last year. The Vaudois had warned the day before: he still needs time, training and competition to find the level allowing him to compete with the best.

Novak Djokovic applied

The world number 1 did not make the mistake of taking this match lightly. Djokovic tightened the game every time Wawrinka showed signs of coming back into the game. The man with 20 Grand Slam titles, for example, saved five first-game balls in the second set to make the entry break, as he had done in the first set.

Wawrinka occasionally flashed his racquet, forehand and backhand, but Djokovic was much more consistent. The Serb also distilled a few cushioning which cut the legs of the Vaudois. Implacable under the Roman sun, he converted five of his six break points.

Read also: In Rome, Stan Wawrinka wins his first victory since February 2021

Just before Roland-Garros, Stan Wawrinka can tell himself that he has taken an important step despite this heavy defeat. His two victories in three sets in the previous rounds and this unfortunately unbalanced battle against “Djoko” should have put him back on track.

As for Djokovic, still looking for a first title in 2022, he continues his rise to power. His next opponent will be the Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime (ATP 9).

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