- Markel hires Isaac Meek to lead the cyber portfolio in Middle East and North Africa
- All Black Coles 'energised' for Japan stint as retirement shelved
- LONGi leads the way in partnership with UNHCR to solarize its Logistics Hub
- EndoQuest™ Robotics Closes $42 Million in Financing to Advance Endoluminal Robotics Technology
- Lundin Mining Announces Completion of CEO Transition Process
- 49ers destroy Eagles, Packers upset Chiefs in NFL
- DMALINK ® Onboards Commerzbank to Enhance the Electronic Trading Ecosystem
- MediaTek Unveils RedCap Solutions to Deliver 5G Data Rates and Impressive Power Efficiency to a Broad Range of IoT Devices
- Magnitude 6.9 quake latest to rattle southern Philippines
- Bitcoin soars past $40,000 on optimism for US trading approval
- Eye Level Literary Award 2023 Celebrates 31st Edition, Showcasing Young Global Writers
- China's Evergrande liquidation case adjourned until January: HK court
- Linyi, China: Entering a New Era of Modern Commercial Logistics
- Beauden Barrett commits to another All Blacks World Cup cycle
- Unlimit and UnionPay International Announce Global Issuing Partnership
- Freedom and dignity: Millennial Chinese leave China for Thailand
- Opera school hones South Africa's musical talent
- Israel expands offensive in Gaza
- What we know about Evergrande's financial future
- Gold jumps to record on rate cut bets but equities struggle
- US high court to hear challenge to $6bn Purdue opioid settlement
- Julia Roberts wants cheeseburgers and booze at the apocalypse
- Volunteer divers guard Oman's 'unique' coral reefs
- Chasing weight loss dream, many in US seek Ozempic alternatives
- In flooded south, Ukraine builds landmark ecocide case against Russia
- Indonesia's coal love affair still aflame despite pledges
- The environment: another victim of Russia's invasion
- Swift, Biles bring star-power to stands for Packers-Chiefs NFL clash
- The 3rd International Medical Innovation and Cooperation Forum convenes in Fangchenggang
- Hikers evacuated as Indonesia volcano spews ash tower
- Tens of thousands march for climate in Brussels
- 49ers destroy Eagles, Hill shines again for Dolphins
- Alaska Airlines to buy Hawaiian Airlines for $1.9 bn
- TradeFlow Capital Management collaborates with Abu Dhabi-based metals digital trader Open Mineral to launch 'Critical Minerals Trade Finance Fund' and...
- Barca loan star Felix makes Atletico pay in title race
- Vegas beckons as NBA's inaugural in-season tournament reaches knockout stage
- Inter make title statement by thumping troubled champions Napoli
- Hill stars again as Dolphins crush Commanders
- Stade forget Pau woes to bury Toulouse
- Scheffler wins World Challenge, Woods encouraged in return
- Barca's loan star Felix makes Atletico pay
- Hope guides West Indies past England in 1st ODI
- BancTrust & Co. Investment Bank and ITMO Ltd Announce a Joint Distribution and Settlement Partnership
- Inter thump Napoli to make Serie A title statement
- Haaland criticises ref on social media after Man City draw
- 'Happens to us a lot': Dortmund slam VAR after Leverkusen draw
- Washington gala to honor top artists including Queen Latifah, Billy Crystal
- Roma eye Italy's Champions League spots with Sassuolo win
- Paris knife attacker 'swore allegiance to Islamic State'
- Guardiola refuses to follow Arteta in referee rant as Man City frustrated
Djokovic triumphs in first match since Australia deportation
Novak Djokovic made a successful return to the tour for the first time since his deportation from Australia, kicking off his 2022 campaign with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Italian teenager Lorenzo Musetti in Dubai on Monday.
The Serbian world No.1 was greeted by loud cheers from a packed Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium as he commenced his quest for a sixth title in the Emirates in style.
"I couldn't ask for a better reception. It's been a while since I played the last match, I couldn't pick a better place to kick-start the season," said Djokovic.
"Best possible experience tonight, thanks very much for your support and welcoming me on court the way you did," added Djokovic on court as 'Nole, Nole' chants rang throughout the arena.
"All in all it's a straight-sets win. I have to be satisfied with my tennis, especially after not playing for almost three months."
The 34-year-old's hopes of winning a 10th Australian Open, and 21st Grand Slam, in Melbourne last month were shattered when he had his visa cancelled and was deported for not being vaccinated against Covid-19.
Djokovic can play in Dubai as a coronavirus vaccine is not a requirement to enter the United Arab Emirates.
Djokovic's meeting with the 19-year-old Musetti was his first competitive match since the Davis Cup Finals in Madrid last December.
It was a rematch of their Roland Garros fourth round from last spring, where Musetti led Djokovic by two-sets-to-love before retiring in the decider.
A break of serve in the fourth game of the contest saw Djokovic inch ahead and he had to stave off a trio of break points to consolidate his advantage and lead 4-1.
The top seed needed just 36 minutes to take the opening set, sending the buoyant Dubai crowd to its feet.
Another early break gave Djokovic control of the second set but he became increasingly frustrated when he faced four break points en route to a 4-2 hold, roaring in anger towards his team in the stands.
That only fired Djokovic up even more as he comfortably marched into the last 16 in 74 minutes.
The 20-time major champion now awaits the winner of the first-round duel between Karen Khachanov and Alex de Minaur.
- Murray warns of 'consequences' -
Earlier on Centre Court, former world No.1 Andy Murray battled for nearly three hours against Australian qualifier Christopher O'Connell before advancing to the second round with a 6-7(4/7), 6-3, 7-5 victory.
Murray is now just one win shy of his goal of reaching 700 career match-wins and could check that item off his bucket list if he comes out victorious in his next clash in Dubai against either Italian No.4 seed Jannik Sinner or Spain's Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.
The three-time Grand Slam winner, competing in Dubai for the first time since he won the title in 2017, says he does not agree with Djokovic's stance against the vaccine but Murray believes the tour is better off when the world No.1 is able to compete.
"I think it would be a lot easier for him obviously if he was to get vaccinated," Murray said on Monday.
"But I also didn't like seeing him in the situation that he was in Australia as someone that I respect, have known since I was a child.
"There are consequences to the decisions he's made just now. He obviously has to accept that. But I don't think it's great for tennis if our best player is not competing in the major events."