Second set: *Djokovic 6-1, 2-3 Sandgren (*denotes next server)
Sandgren holds but he’s made to work for it, aided by a few missed backhands by Djokovic. Now the American is hustled off court for a quick change of kit. It’s sweltering out there even with the breeze and both men are soaked.
Second set: Djokovic 6-1, 2-2 Sandgren* (*denotes next server)
Djokovic is dialed in now. Another easy hold for the Wimbledon champion, who’s gotten 36 of 44 first serves in (82%) and not really given Sandgren much of a chance.
Second set: *Djokovic 6-1, 1-2 Sandgren (*denotes next server)
Sandgren holds at love, rattling off four quick points including a 128mph ace. His easiest hold of the match and the players will change ends.
Second set: Djokovic 6-1, 1-1 Sandgren* (*denotes next server)
Easy hold for Djokovic, who looks far more comfortable at this stage.
Second set: *Djokovic 6-1, 0-1 Sandgren (*denotes next server)
Sandgren desperately needs a drama-free hold to open the second set and it appears as if he’ll get one after racing to 30-love. Then he’s passed by Djokovic on a net approach and sends a forehand sailing for 30-all, but the American serves himself out of trouble in the next few months with his third and fourth aces of the night to hold.
Djokovic wins first set, 6-1!
First set: Djokovic 6-1 Sandgren
A bit of a scratchy service game for Djokovic but he manages to hold to take the first set, coming to net to finish it off with an elementary backhand winner. The stats might suggest a Djokovic below his best: six winners and 10 unforced errors. Yet it was enough to win 6-1 in the opener. The biggest reasons? Djokovic is putting in 82% of his first serves into play (compared to 48% for Sandgren) and managed to dial up his game on the bigger points.
Djokovic breaks in sixth game of first set!
First set: *Djokovic 5-1 Sandgren (*denotes next server)
Sandgren falls behind love-15, then 15-30. Then he overcooks a forehand from the baseline and Djokovic, who’s cleaned up the errors nicely over the last few games, has a pair of break points. On the first Sandgren misses on a two-handed backhand from just inside the baseline, giving Djokovic the break and an opportunity to serve for the first set.
First set: Djokovic 4-1 Sandgren* (*denotes next server)
Sandgren standing so far behind the baseline on Djokovic’s serve now. He manages to win the first point, but Djokovic rattles off four quick points for the easy hold from there and consolidates the break. Djokovic’s accuracy on his first serve so far is an ominous sign for the American.
Djokovic breaks in fourth game of first set!
First set: *Djokovic 3-1 Sandgren (*denotes next server)
Early hint of trouble for Sandgren, who wins the opening point but is passed on the approach for a winner and then nets a forehand deep into a rally and finds himself behind 15-30. Then he double-faults for 15-40 and Djokovic has his first break-point chance of the night – and pair of them. Sandgren saves the first with a booming first serve that Djokovic can’t return into the court, but Djokovic capitalizes on the next point and has the early break.
First set: Djokovic 2-1 Sandgren* (*denotes next server)
A relatively stress-free for Djokovic from 30-all, but he’s made eight unforced errors in three games. Not the cleanest start.
First set: *Djokovic 1-1 Sandgren (*denotes next server)
A shaky opening service game from Sandgren, who is missing more first serves than he’s making and suddenly finds himself at deuce from 40-15. Some push-pull from there but he’s bailed out by a few Djokovic errors and finally holds on the third game point. Sandgren looking a bit tentative along the baseline and wary of coming in when he’s got Djokovic in a bit of trouble in the rallies. He’ll need to take his chances if he hopes to upend the odds against the two-time champion tonight.
First set: Djokovic 1-0 Sandgren* (*denotes next server)
Djokovic won the toss and has elected to serve first. A long rally on the first point and Djokovic blinks first with an error. Another missed forehand early in the second point and Djokovic is behind love-30. Now a 19-shot rally and it’s Sandgren who overcooks a forehand on the run, sending a running forehand wide. But another miss by Djokovic sets up double break point for Sandgren. Djokovic saves the first when Sandgren frames a shot badly from the baseline, then the second with a booming serve that a flailing Sandgren can’t return into the court. Moments later Djokovic escapes with the hold from 15-40 down, saving a pair of break points along the way.
Djokovic has compiled a win-loss record of 28-4 after a 6-6 start, highlighted by his 13th grand slam championship at Wimbledon and the title a Cincinnati, where he became the first player to win all nine Masters titles in his career.
Sandgren is 2-2 against top 10 opponents with both wins coming during his breakthrough run to the Australian Open quarter-finals in January over No 8 Wawrinka and No 5 Thiem.
Hello and welcome to Arthur Ashe Stadium for tonight’s second-round match between Novak Djokovic and the American Tennys Sandgren. At last a cool breeze has descended on the National Tennis Center after four days of sweltering temperatures that soared above 90F even into the evening. This is only the second time Djokovic and Sandgren have met – but the second time in two majors after Djokovic’s clinical 6-3, 6-1, 6-2 win in the first round of Wimbledon a few months ago.
The players have just emerged from the tunnel and warm-ups should be under way shortly.