Novak Djokovic eased past Bernabe Zapata Miralles to reach the third round of the US Open as Dominic Stricker secured the biggest win of his career against Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Second seed Djokovic made it safely through after demolishing Spain’s Miralles on Arthur Ashe Stadium.
The Serbian, chasing a historic 24th Grand Slam title, dropped just six games in a 6-4 6-1 6-1 victory.
More accustomed to the bright lights of the New York night session, the 36-year-old instead absorbed the muggy afternoon heat, firing off 35 winners while overcoming early inaccuracy on his first serve to eventually break his opponent down.
Djokovic is already assured of retaking the world No 1 spot when the rankings are updated after the tournament after winning his opening match.
He will take on fellow Serb Laslo Djere on Friday after the world No 38 made quick work of Frenchman Hugo Gaston 6-1 6-2 6-3 to advance.
During his on-court interview, Djokovic was asked who would win a match between himself of present day and himself of 10 years ago.
He said: “Easy, no problems, straight sets win for the 36-year-old!
“I don’t want to play myself. I don’t, but I do. Every single match I play myself the most in my mind. If I win this battle I win on the court.”
He continued by explaining what he has learned over the last decade.
“I want to say experience, understanding, what needs to be done in important moments, preserving energy and focusing on present moment,” he said. “I’m still moving well for an old fella!”
Henman: Djokovic’s efficiency a joke
Sky Sports Tennis’ Tim Henman analysed Djokovic’s dominant performance against Zapata Miralles.
“I don’t want to say the majority of players are beaten before they go out on court, but they probably are.
“You go out and try to take those risks, but when you get into these baseline exchanges with his movement, it’s just a joke how efficient he is.”
Tsitsipas stunned by Stricker
Stricker, the 21-year-old qualifier from Switzerland, ranked 128 in the world, stunned two-time Grand Slam finalist Tsitsipas with 7-5 6-7 (2-7) 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 victory.
Stricker is a former French Open junior champion who recently admitted his coach had told him to cut down on chocolate and cookies but it was Tsitsipas who was left feeling sour after a four-hour slog on the Grandstand Court.
“You know, I came out today pretty well today and felt good from the first set,” said Stricker.
“Over four hours it was a tough battle and I’m just super happy right now. I’m going to enjoy the rest of the day and recover tomorrow.
“It’s such a great day for me and such a great win. It gives me a lot of confidence. I believe a lot in me now.”
Remarkably, Stricker could have been on the plane back to Bern last week having faced a match point in the second round of qualifying.
He has now achieved his best result at a Grand Slam, having bettered his run to the second round at Wimbledon earlier this summer.
Tsitsipas served for the match at 5-3 in the fourth set, and the Greek said: “That hasn’t happened to me before. It’s the first time for me.
“Usually I’m much tougher mentally, and I have shown it by coming back. Even though sometimes I get broken serving for the match, let’s say, I still find ways in the tie-break or perhaps in the fifth set. Today was not the case.”
The US Open is back on Sky Sports with the promise to give fans live coverage of the Grand Slam like never before.
Sky welcomes tennis back to its channels, adding to the existing sports portfolio and reaffirming the broadcaster as the home of live sport in the UK & Ireland.
Sky Sports’ new mixed reality studio features multiple custom built LED screens, integrated light ‘sabres’, and an open canopy roof, making the space alive with colour and energy to reflect the vibrancy of the last Grand Slam of the year.
With integrated AR capabilities, a versatile LED floor, and a ‘fourth wall’, the viewer will be transported to the Arthur Ashe Stadium in a 360-degree immersive environment. Our tennis experts will take the viewer into the eyes of the players for expert Hawkeye analysis and insight as the tournament progresses.
The technology involved allows us to add an entire new dimension and will bring customers closer to the action.
Highlights of matches will be available across Sky Sports TV and our social media platforms.
Video highlights will also be available of the Sky Sports website and app, where there will also be a daily live text commentary on the Sky Sports website and app, as well as live scores, reports, analysis and features.