Djokovic starts new year in style against Dzumhur
Novak Djokovic needed just 55 minutes to ease into the second round of the Qatar Open with a dominant win over Damir Dzumhur.
Djokovic started his 2019 in imperious fashion, dropping just three games in a 6-1 6-2 victory as he bids to further his dominance of men's tennis having shrugged off long-standing injury issues to win Wimbledon and the US Open in 2018.
And, with the Australian Open on the horizon, Djokovic looked like a player who will be extremely difficult to stop as he coasted past a helpless Dzumhur.
He required only 25 minutes to win the first set and forced Dzumhur to fight back from 40-0 down to hold in the opening game of the second. The Bosnian could not repeat that feat, though, and the writing was on the wall when an emphatic return brought up Djokovic's third break, which was soon followed by a fourth.
Dzumhur, aided by some wonderful play at the net, forced Djokovic to serve the match out but he did so and will now face Marton Fucsovics, who beat Marius Copil.
There was a shock, however, as third seed Karen Khachanov - one of the sport's rising stars - was beaten by three-time grand slam champion Stan Wawrinka.
Khachanov saved six set points in a first set tie-break but eventually lost that shoot-out and was unable to recover from dropping serve in the third game of the second and the world number 11 succumbed 7-6 (9-7) 6-4.
Sixth seed David Goffin is also out as qualifier Ricardas Berankis pulled off a superb comeback, taking his fourth match point in a decisive tie-break.
There were also Doha wins for Guido Pella, Marco Cecchinato, Dusan Lajovic and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.
At the Maharashtra Open in Pune there were surprise defeats for Denis Istomin to Simone Bolelli and Marcel Granollers to Ramkumar Ramanathan while Ivo Karlovic overcame teenager Felix Auger Aliassime.
Benoit Paire and Jiri Vesely are also through, as are Ilya Ivashka and Laslo Djere.