Melbourne [Australia], Jan 16 (ANI): Former world number one and Serbian tennis maestro Novak Djokovic celebrated his long-awaited return to the grand slam with a thrilling straight sets victory over American Donald Young at the Australian Open here on Tuesday.
The Serbian tennis maestro showed no signs of the elbow injury that cut short his 2017 season as he eased past Young 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 in a one-sided opening round clash of the men's singles event that lasted one hour and 51 minutes at the Margaret Court Arena.
Six-time Grand Slam champion Djokovic won 11 of the first 12 games and amassed 33 winners in an ominous display of class and power.
It was Djokovic's first match since he was forced to retire during his Wimbledon quarter-final clash against Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych.
The 30-year-old, who is bidding to clinch his sixth Australian Open title, had earlier made a successful comeback from six-month injury lay-off by thrashing world number five Dominic Thiem 6-1, 6-4 in the exhibition event at the Kooyong Classic in Melbourne today.
Djokovic will now take on either Frenchman Gael Monfils or qualifier Jaume Munar in the second match of the first major of the tournament.
In another men's singles clash, Swiss star Stan Wawrinka also made a winning start to his Australian Open campaign as he bounced back from a set down against Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania to storm into the second round.
After comfortably winning the first two sets, Wawrinka went down in the third before rebounded strongly to clinch a 6-3, 6-4, 2-6, 7-6 (7-2) win over Berankis in a thrilling opening round clash.
The ninth-seed will now square off with Tennys Sandgren of America in the second round. (ANI)