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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 January 2008, 12:12 GMT
Australian Open 2008



Australian Open, Melbourne

Men's final result:

N DJOKOVIC (Ser) bt J-W TSONGA (Fra)

4-6 6-4 6-3 7-6 (7-2)

LATEST ACTION (all times GMT)

606: DEBATE
To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111. (Not all contributions can be used)

Watch this match live on BBC TWO and live on the BBC Sport website (UK users only) or listen on Radio 5 Live Sports Extra

By Piers Newbery

1211: Good old NoDjo. He thanks everyone and then says to the crowd, "I know you wanted him to win more than me." That raises a laugh and seems a good way to go out. Thanks for your attention over the last couple of weeks, come back for the French Open armed with some new tennis nicknames.

1201: "Well done Djokovic, step aside Nadal and Federer there is a new force in tennis."
From cantonabeachsoccer on 606

1158: "Djokovic has proved himself on all surfaces and he's already reached another Grand Slam final at the US Open. He's got the shots and he's a super, super athlete with all the power as well."
Pat Cash on 5 Live Sports Extra

1157: "Enjoyed that last set - it was amazing and Tsonga u r a winner 2 ! Congrats Novak!"
From Elizabeth May Pink via text

Fourth set:

Djokovic 7-6 (7-2) Tsonga
There we have it - a first Grand Slam title for 20-year-old Djokovic. He gets a mini-break on the second point and all but makes sure when Tsonga double-faults to go 5-1 down. Djokovic gets two serves for the title and takes both points to cap a superb performance, before falling to the floor in the traditional manner. There are hugs and tears all around in the Djokovic box, and quite right too.

Djokovic 6-6 Tsonga
Tsonga misses a backhand for 15-15 but responds with a magnificent forehand into the corner and a big service winner. The Frenchman then chooses a bad time for his first double fault of the evening but hangs on and it's a tie-break. My, what tension.

1143: "You forgot NadRa!! (See 1128 entry) How could you!!"
From Lauren, leeds, via text (Er, yeah)

Djokovic 6-5 Tsonga
Djokovic is pulled wide and makes a forehand error for 30-30, and he then sticks a regulation backhand into the net. It's break point but Djokovic gets away with it after a poor drop shot as Tsonga fails to put away a mid-court ball and NoDjo takes the volley. He serves out for a huge hold.

1138: "Yannick Noah is indeed the last French player to win a set in a Grand Slam final (1041 entry) when he won the French Open in 1983. Both Henri Leconte and CÚdric Pioline (twice) reached finals, but they were defeated in straight sets."
From meef01 on 606

Djokovic 5-5 Tsonga
Tsonga plays a superb off-forehand winner when stumbling backwards at 15-15 and moments later he has the game. Good stuff, JoTso.

Djokovic 5-4 Tsonga
Another excellent hold from Djokovic, who throws in a fine volley off his toes, and Tsonga must hold to keep the match alive.

1131: "It's 20 years since a five-set final here, hard to believe. Me against Wilander."
Pat Cash on 5 Live Sports Extra (He lost, kids. Sorry Pat)

Djokovic 4-4 Tsonga
Great work from Tsonga who is under huge pressure at 30-30 but holds his nerve, taking the game with a big serve.

1128: "New names for players. NoDjo, JoTso, RFed. Anymore??"
From Vicky via text (Loads - Nalbo, Muzza, NiDav, A-Rod, Gonzo, Baggy, Boggy, Ljubo. I have too much time on my hands)

Djokovic 4-3 Tsonga
Well, NoDjo answers any questions about his fitness with a superb game rounded off with a beautiful drop volley on the stretch.

1125: "I see what you did there - whether or not it goes to a fifth set you've made correct prediction (see 1-0 entry). You wily thing."
From anon via text (Rumbled. And don't call me Wily)

Djokovic 3-3 Tsonga
Wallop. Tsonga holds serve to love and now we'll see how Djokjovic is doing after his lengthy treatment session.

1122: "I guess it's loss of a bit of condition. I'm not a big fan of players being able to do this. I don't think he's in any physical danger at all and I think he's gaining an unfair advantage just when the momentum seemed to be going a little bit with Tsonga."
From BBC Sport's Andrew Castle

1117: "Its a bit like watching Ali vs Screech from saved by the bell.. "
From anon via text

Djokovic 3-2 Tsonga
Djokovic really isn't moving too well now, in fact both men look petty shattered. A net cord goes against Tsonga as he falls to 40-15 behind before battling back for deuce. NoDjo holds on with a big second serve and asks fro the trainer at the changeover.

1113: "Regarding the text from Nathan of Cardiff at 1054, he's referring to the Magpie rhyme. You know, the one that goes, "1 for sorrow, 2 for joy, 3 for a girl ... " and all that. Although, Tsonga would just be wishing for 1 beak to come back into this game."
From silverplumes on 606

Djokovic 2-2 Tsonga
Look out - the big man from Le Mans appears to be back and now it's Djokovic who is hobbling around after possibly tweaking a hamstring. Or getting cramp. Maybe he's broken a nail, I don't know. Anyway, Tsonga holds to love.

Djokovic 2-1 Tsonga
Tsonga has a glimpse of a chance at 40-30 down but blazes a forehand into the tram lines and Djokovic moves ahead again.

1104: "Magpies? Noah? Is the only way to get on this page to talk utter nonsense?!"
From Joe, london, via text (Yep)

1103: "I saw many lone magpies this morning and saluted them all!! Come on djokovic!! I wish nadal was in the final."
From anon via text

Djokovic 1-1 Tsonga
There are more signs of tiredness from Tsonga but he hangs on.

Djokovic 1-0 Tsonga
NoDjo absolutely creams a forehand for a winner at 40-0 and he looks in great form now. I've just remembered I predicted Djokovic in four sets. I've never got a prediction right in my life, so prepare for a fifth set.


Third set:

Djokovic 6-3 Tsonga
A very tired looking mid-court forehand into the net suggests Tsonga is there for the taking at 0-30. He puts up a desperate lob that is eventually called out and fails with a challenge. Tsonga saves the first two set points, firing a cross-court pass on the second, and Djokovic nets a backhand on the third to the delight of most of the crowd.

Djokovic is unconcerned and smacks yet another backhand down the line. Set point number four - but his attempted lob is poor and Tsonga smashes it away. A fifth chance arrives and this time Tsonga saves it with as service winner. Never fear, set point number six - cue a Tsonga drop volley. Finally, Djokovic takes the set when forcing a Tsonga error on the volley. Phew.

1054: "I just saw 2 magpies out my window. In the song 2s for joy. Come on tsonga."
From Nathan, cardiff, via text (I've no idea either)

Djokovic 5-3 Tsonga
A brilliant backhand down the line seals a solid hold for Djokovic and he looks very much on course for the set now.

Djokovic 4-3 Tsonga
A sweeping forehand gives Tsonga the game to 30 and keeps him in touch on this set.

1041: "Djokovic on a roll now, hope Tsonga cn respond. He's th 1st Fr finalist 2 win a set since Noah!"
From French fan via text

Djokovic 4-2 Tsonga
Aaah, that's better. Djokovic is in a bit of trouble at 15-30 but then sticks a backhand return into the net. Moments later, Tsonga complains for the second time today about how long Djokovic takes to serve but Carlos Ramos is not impressed and the Serb goes on to hold.

1037: "Why all this fuss about both players names starting with a silent letter? (See 1029 entry) They dont. We brits are just bad at languages."
From anon via text

Djokovic 3-2 Tsonga
Tsonga holds to 15, very good. I need a comfort break.

Djokovic 3-1 Tsonga
Djokovic holds to 15. The massed ranks of Djokovics in the stands continue to applaud on thier feet. They're all wearing matching tracksuits, making them easy to pick out. Lovely.

1029: "Hey Piers, is this the first final ever in which: Both players' surnames' first letter is silent (D in Djokovic and T in Tsonga) And in which both players' surnames' first vowel is an o? Cheers."
From Torres' right peg on 606 (Brilliant questions both. Dunno.)

Djokovic 2-1 Tsonga
The trademark Djokovic backhand down the line comes out and he has two break points at 15-40. The first disappears with a forehand that goes long and Tsonga hits an ace on the second. A third break point comes along and after a lengthy rally, Tsonga sends a forehand wide.

1023: "Goodness knows what odds Tsonga was at the start of the tournament amid all the Murray hype! 100-1?"
From Ken, Aberdeen, via text

Djokovic 1-1 Tsonga
I hate apostrophes. Anyway, Djokovic holds just as impressively and both men look sharp in this vital set.

Djokovic 0-1 Tsonga
A good solid start to the third set from Tsonga on serve, no problem. In the middle of this madness I'm emailed by a friend wanting me to help him with his son's English homework. This country.


Second set:

1017:"Tsonga has to get his serve working again but, to be honest, he's just been a bit loose. It's a critical time now and he wants some big serves and to tighten up that forehand."
Pat Cash on 5 Live Sports Extra

Djokovic 6-4 Tsonga
Tight, shmite. Djokovic hits two aces on his way to a mightily imrpessive love hold and we're all square.

Djokovic 5-4 Tsonga
A few signs of irritation come from Tsonga as he continues to struggle a bit, but he holds serve to force Djokovic to serve out, and the Serb has been know to get tight. Haven't we all?

1009: "Tsonga is playin as if hes no 3 in the world and ndjo playin as if its his 1st ever final. Needs this set 2 hav any chance."
From J in crawley via text

Djokovic 5-3 Tsonga
Suddenly it's Tsonga who has lost his mojo, whatever that is. The errors start to flow from his previously awesome forehand and Djokovic consolidates the break of serve.

Djokovic 4-3 Tsonga
He's back! After being on the wrong ending of a pummelling for most of the evening, Djokovic fires a backhand return past Tsonga to get to 15-40 and two break points. At last we have some fire from the Serb and he takes his chance when Tsonga misses a forehand.

Djokovic 3-3 Tsonga
Djokovic gets a much-needed love service game.

0958: "Beautiful style and sense of purpose from Tsonga! He is inventive and incredibly calm considering he is playing his first ever final of an ATP tournament (let alone a GS)."
From UncleAdrian on 606

Djokovic 2-3 Tsonga
Djokovic chases down a drop shot to get to deuce but Tsonga comes up with the deadly one-two combination of serve-forehand and comes through, giving it some "Allez!" Djokovic, meanwhile, wanders off court for the changeover shaking his head.

0954: Our man in the Rod Laver Arena press room tells me that the French reporters went bananas as Tsonga took the first set, screaming "Allez", "Magnifique" etc etc. Then one of them turned around to our man and said: "This could have been you, but your guy lost on day one to our guy". Nice.

Djokovic 2-2 Tsonga
It's not often that Djokovic is the more low-key of the players on court but it's not just Tsonga's play that is giving him the edge, it's his sheer charisma that seems to have stunned NoDjo. The third seed does well to come back from 0-30 but he's finding this tougher and tougher.

0948: "Tsonga was born in Le Mans so is bound to win if it becomes a trial of endurance. Also he has a brother named Enzo."
From Marc, Liverpool, via text

Djokovic 1-2 Tsonga
Tsonga holds with more big serving and one very sharp backhand volley.

Djokovic 1-1 Tsonga
A ddogy forehand sees Djokovic slip to 15-30 and he does well to get himself out of trouble, but he's looking very flat at the moment.

Djokovic 0-1 Tsonga
Tsonga holds confidently and Djokovic looks in shock(ovic). Sorry about that.


First set:

0938: "After seeing Tsonga last year, i said 'that boy will be top ten in no time'. Where would a win here put him in the rankings? Is this his best surface do we know?"
from anon via text (It's like the Spanish inquisition - apparently a win would put Tsonga ninth in the world, up from 38, and I'm guessing it's his favourite surface now)

0937: "Those last two points were two of the best you will ever see. Just an excellent set of tennis, and to finish like this - it's a joke, ridiculous."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd

Djokovic 4-6 Tsonga
Tsonga really takes charge with a fierce backhand on his way to 0-30 ahead and is unlucky when an apparent forehand winner jumps off the net-cord and goes out. Djokovic gets back to 30-30 but Tsonga comes up with a stunning forehand winner off a smash, and then works the crowd with some wild celebrations. Good stuff. It's set point, and he makes it with an amazing lob on the run. Tsonga's dad then gets in on the fist-pumping act and the place goes wild.

Djokovic 4-5 Tsonga
The Tsonga serve is up and running now - three aces in a row give him a comfortable hold and he certainly has the edge right now.

Djokovic 4-4 Tsonga
Another close Djokovic service game is in the balance at 40-30 when Tsonga complains to the umpire about the time it takes for the Serb to serve, after his endless ball bouncing. That should spice things up a bit. Tsonga misses a makeable forehand at deuce and Djokovic wallops an ace to hold.

Djokovic 3-4 Tsonga
Blimey, we've been going 35 minutes and played seven games. Wish I'd made a packed lunch now. Anyway, Tsonga is in a bit of trouble at 15-30 but chooses a good time to smack down his first two aces of the match and holds from deuce.

0917: "French Fan: Bonjour. If Tsonga wins this 1, I'll play tennis agn - which I haven't in 4 yrs. Allez"
From Jo :) via text

Djokovic 3-3 Tsonga
More laughter all round over a line call, which involves an overrule, a Hawkeye challenge and apparently a joke from umpire Carlos Ramos that I couldn't hear. The crowd are in stitches. Are we sure Mansour Bahrami isn't there somewhere? When everyone pulls themselves together, Djokovic holds.

0913: "Five games of highly entertaining tennis given the occasion. Tsonga was up early and practising on Rod Laver Arena at 9am, while Djokovic was here only a few hours ago."
BBC Sport's Chris Bailey

Djokovic 2-3 Tsonga
The first rally is another belter - a bit like watching one of those 'hilarious' exhibitions with Mansour Bahrami but performed by two brilliant athletes under the age of 60. Tsonga leaps for a smash a la Sampras and Djokvic does well to reach it and send up a lob, but Tsonga leaps even higher and sticks it away. Another tight game goes to deuce but the Frenchman holds on, his parents clapping away furiously in the stands.

0910: "I'm backing Tsonga for this one. I feel though that Djoko's experience may do something. But didn't Rafa have that experience as well...?"
From Maxxfoot on 606

Djokovic 2-2 Tsonga
Djokovic still looks a little edgy, making the first double fault of the match when 30-0 clear, and Tsonga puts the pressure on with a fabulous drop volley. Djokovic then nets a forehand and it's break point again, but this time the Serb comes up with an ace down the middle. He then digs out a seemingly miraculous cross-court backhand pass but the umpire overrules, and Hawkeye backs him up. Break point number two and in an epic point, NoDjo repeats the backhand from the previous rally and this time makes it. Incredible stuff. A woeful drop shot follows soon after but Djokovic comes through.

0857: "Pressure affects players in different ways - my feet always used to turn to lead, I felt like I couldn't move, so I'd just charge into the net to try and do something."
Pat Cash on 5 Live Sports Extra

Djokovic 1-2 Tsonga
Apparently Cedric Pioline has flown in especially to see his young countryman in action. Oh, the glamour. Tsonga withstands the pressure of being under the former Wimbledon finalists's gaze by holding to 15 in a much more impressive game.

Djokovic 1-1 Tsonga
Tsonga makes the first Hawkeye challenge of the day on a Djokovic serve and gets it right - the ball was well wide - but NoDjo wins the replayed point anyway. This time it's the Serb who looks tight, though, when he spoons a forehand way wide from 30-30 and then nets a backhand. Tsonga gets the break back and Djokovic looks less than pleased.

Djokovic 1-0 Tsonga
Tsonga looks like he's carrying on where he left off against Nadal when a big forehand and winning serve get him to 30-15, but he then sends a couple of regulation forehands long. Nerves, surely. It's an early break point for Djokovic and he takes it with a sweeping forehand into the corner.

0845: "We've seen the potential of Tsonga in the last few years but to me it's as if he's matured as a player during these two weeks. Quite remarkable."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd

0842: "Experience counts and you have to favour Novak initially but you have to see how it starts in the first set. If Jo-Wilfried can handle it, then it's going to be on."
Jim Courier on 5 Live Sports Extra

0840: "Djokovic is very popular. He's a good kid, plays great tennis and is fun in front of the camera, but the bottom line is he's done his talking with his racket."
Pat Cash on 5 Live Sports Extra

0838: They step out on Rod laver Arena to a huge cheer, Tsonga already jumping around in excitement. There look to be large French and Serbian contingents in the crowd so there should be a good atmosphere.

0836: The two players are stopped on their way onto court for a brief word with Todd Woodbridge. "It's very exciting and I'll do my best," says Tsonga. And Djokovic adds: "It's going to be very difficult but I'm playing against someone who doesn't have anything to lose." So there you go.

0833: "Tsonga has taken it all in his stride. He has just emerged from the pack to become the first of the young Frenchmen to reach a Grand Slam final. There's no doubt he's great for the game, a superstar in the making."
BBC Sport's Andrew Castle

0828: Those who were with me yesterday will remember the choir of angelic little Aussies singing thier national anthem while bizarrely dressed as chefs. Well look out, the Australian yoof are back, and a cracking rendition it is too.

0825: Apparently that wasn't The Veronicas, they were on earlier and are a couple of vivacious twin girls. That was Evermore. Wish I'd got here a bit earlier. Anyway, you still have time to follow the match on BBC TWO, 5 Live Sports Extra, or via the streaming on this website. You really can't beat text-based coverage of tennis though.

0820: We're being treated to music on the Rod Laver Arena from a band that our woman in the stadium, Caroline Cheese, informs me are called The Veronicas. I wouldn't bother making a note of the name.

0815: Morning everyone, welcome to a sun-drenched Melbourne for the men's final between Novak Djokovic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Via Shepherd's Bush.

It's not the final anyone would have predicted but given the pair's thumping of top seeds Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the semis, it certainly features two worthy contenders.

The pair have never played each other before but world number three Djokovic starts as favourite on paper, having won seven career titles and reached last year's US Open final.

Game isn't played on paper though, is it? It's played on good old-fashioned Plexicushion, something which is clearly to Tsonga's liking.

He may be unseeded and playing in his first senior final of any kind but he has seen off Andy Murray, Richard Gasquet, Mikhail Youzhny and demolished Nadal in the past fortnight.

So who's going to win? I'm going for Djokovic in four, but exactly a year ago I tipped Fernando Gonzalez to beat Federer in the final. Idiot.

SEE ALSO
Tennis on the BBC
07 Jan 08 |  Tennis


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