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|The world’s No. 1 Djokovic leads 4-2 in head-to-head matches against Davydenko, with all the matches coming on hard courts. The last time Djokovic lost to the Russian was back in 2009, having won their last two meetings, including in the second round of the 2011 Montreal-1000, where Djokovic went on to win the title.||While recent history has not favored Davydenko, the 30-year-old Russian, currently ranked No. 39, has had success this year against the game’s very best, having beaten then top-ranked Rafael Nadal on his way to the final of Doha. He has a 9-32 record collectively against Djokovic, Nadal and Federer.|
|Djokovic is a tour-leading 59-2 for the year, with the losses coming against Roger Federer and Andy Murray. At one point he won 43 matches in a row, which put him in third place on the all-time consecutive wins list in the open era. He’s just got to be playing within the realm of his current brilliance, and he will take this match.||Davydenkio clearly has his work cut out for him tonight in what will be the Russian’s first third-round appearance at a Grand Slam since the 2010 Australian Open. But if he’s able to attack Djokovic (a tall order) and not hang back and allow Djokovic to dictate points, he has a shot.|
|Djokovic has opened up a veritable bagel factory in Queens this year, having won three of the five sets he’s played 6-0. He’s lost just three games in those matches, helped by a retirement in the second set from Conor Niland in the first round, with Djokovic leading 6-0, 5-1. In short, he’s not only sharp but well rested.||Davydenko had a five-set win over the No. 32 seed Ivan Dodig in a match that went just over four hours. (He is now 13-8 in his career in five set matches.) He had an easier time in the second round, winning in straight sets over Potito Starace. Most troubling for Davydenko, however, was his summer hard court season, where he won just four matches in four tournaments.|
|Djokovic is playing so well these days that he’s not only supremely confident but downright ebullient about his game, a formidable combination in attitude. “I've been playing some matches where I felt that I, you know, could not miss the ball,’’ he said after his win over Carlos Berlocq, where he dropped just two games. “I tell you, as a tennis player, as any athlete, when you're playing perfectly, everything seems so good and you're so happy.”||In 2011, Davydenko has yet to beat anyone ranked inside the top 15. His best win so far was over then 20th-ranked Alexandr Dolgopolov, on clay, on his way to the round of-of-16 in Barcelona.|
|Djokovic is 35-1 on hard courts for 2011 heading into this match. He’s 236-61 lifetime on the surface.||Davydenko’s stats are telling from his first round, five-set win over Dodig. Revealing his strong return game but suspect serve, He won an impressive 45 percent of points when returning serve but 69 percent on his own first serve and just 43 percent off his second serves. He also amazingly had just seven unforced errors.|
|With his Australian Open and Wimbledon titles in 2011, Djokovic is looking here to become just the 6th man to win three Grand Slam titles in the same year in the Open era. Despite his success, he’s got plenty of motivation to collect more titles.||You can never count out the veteran Davydenko, who has been ranked as high as No. 3 in the world and won 21 titles in his career. While his ranking has dropped this year, at one point to a low of No. 42, he is a dangerous opponent for anyone. Perhaps Djokovic put it best before the match, saying: “He definitely cannot be underestimated. If he is on the roll, if he feels the ball well, he can be very dangerous.”|