French Open: 'The memories from last year are fresh in my mind' – Djokovic feels strong in title defence

By Sports Desk May 23, 2022

Novak Djokovic found his footing after the first set to cruise past Yoshihito Nishioka 6-3 6-1 6-0 in Monday's opening round, and said he feels good returning to Roland Garros after winning the French Open in 2021.

It was a relatively close opening set of the tournament for Djokovic, as Nishioka created three break-point opportunities compared to the Serb's two, but Djokovic was able to save all three, while capitalising on one of his own.

Overall for the first set, Djokovic won 55 per cent of the total points, and that number climbed the longer the match went on. He won 63 per cent of the points in the second set, and 67 per cent in the third.

Speaking with the media after his match, Djokovic was excited to be back on clay as he seeks his third French Open crown – the only grand slam he has not won at least three times.

"I have to be pleased with the match," he said. "I struggled to adapt in the first set. 

"He is a very quick player. The first set was close, but I cruised through the second and third.

"I always expect the highest for myself, but it was a very good start. I have been feeling well on clay in the past few weeks. 

"I am happy to be back. The memories from last year are fresh in my mind."

In the second round, Djokovic will play the winner between Alex Molcan and Federia Coria.

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