Novak Djokovic’s clinical victory tells a lot of its story via the score line of 7-5, 6-2, 6-2.
Zverev did do some damage with big backhand strikes up the line. Djokovic countered Zverev’s strategy by hitting some sharply angled shots to the backhand side forcing Zverev to move a bit out of his striking comfort zone. Late in the second set, Djokovic led by a single break and held after two deuces to take a 5-2 lead. Zverev then was broken to lose the set in another deuce game. It can sound like a truism to say player X played the big points better, but from 4-2 to 6-2 in the second set there were two games up for grabs and the #1 seed took both games. Similarly, Zverev had two break points to open the third set and missed forehands as Djokovic held.
I don’t think breaking at 2-4 in the 2nd set or at 0-0 in the third set would have changed the match result, but Zverev is not apt to consistently push the 4 men ranked in front of him if he does not start winning deuce games or games with break points such as those. Novak Djokovic stands 6 sets from holding all four majors at the same time (again!) because he tends to take advantage of chances that arise during a match.
The top 4 seeds clashing in the semifinal round is ideal for men’s tennis. Thiem and Djokovic winning in straight sets today also minimizes the back-to-back fatigue that could result tomorrow.