World number one Novak Djokovic handed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga a 6-2, 6-4 hammering on Sunday to claim his third Shanghai Masters title and 25th Masters 1000 title overall to brutally reinforce his reign over men’s tennis.
The one-sided win in one hour, 18 minutes at the Qi Zhong Stadium gave Serbia’s Djokovic his ninth title of a season in which he also won three out of the four Grand Slams.
Djokovic’s serve was broken once, but he broke the floundering Tsonga four times as he collected his 10th title in China on the back of a 17-match winning streak including 22 straight sets. Djokovic was similarly dominant over Andy Murray in the semi-finals and he has looked untouchable in both Shanghai and Beijing, where he won his sixth China Open title last week.
After a rock-star welcome complete with dry ice and ear-splitting music, Tsonga was quickly in trouble and he nervously netted on break points in the first and third games to go 0-3 down. Some rare Djokovic errors gave Tsonga a break of his own but he immediately handed back the initiative to the Serb, who calmly served out to love for 6-3 and a one-set lead.
Tsonga hammered his second ace of the afternoon to get off the mark in the second set, and then two service winners and two more aces helped him neutralise a break point and go 2-1 ahead. Djokovic held his first three service games to love, ramping up pressure on the Frenchman, but Tsonga held firm and he unleashed a crunching forehand to stay in front 4-3.
The Frenchman bravely stared down five break points in the second set but on the sixth, he finally cracked with a double fault to put Djokovic 5-4 ahead and serving for the match. And the Serb did not need asking twice, grabbing the first match point when Tsonga put a lob long, and then soaking up the acclaim from the early evening crowd.