CAPE TOWN – It was a just a step too far for South Africa’s Kevin Anderson as Novak Djokovic clinched his fourth Wimbledon title and 13th Grand Slam crown with a straight sets victory in the final on Sunday.
Anderson tried to make a valiant comeback bid in the third set and managed to take it to a tie-break, but it was not to be for the 32-year-old as Djokovic triumphed 6-2 6-2 7-6 (7/3).
It was a tough ask from the start for Anderson, who came through a five-set win over Roger Federer and the marathon semi-final against John Isner, where he won the decider 26-24.
He just didn’t look as sharp as he has been in the rest of the tournament, and made the worst possible start as he was broken in the first game of the final.
Djokovic was ruthless and broke again to take a 4-1 lead in the first set, and he won it 6-2.
The tired-looking Anderson battled with “tennis elbow” and received treatment at the end of the first set, with the physical trainer massaging his right bicep and elbow.
But it didn’t seem to help, with the second set following a similar story as Djokovic broke Anderson’s serve in the first game, and the Serbian closed it out 6-2 again.
It wasn’t one-way traffic in the third set, though, as this time Anderson held serve in the opening game.
It went with serve until Anderson piled on the pressure to get to set point at 6-5, but Djokovic held off a few more break points to take it into the tie-break.
The 31-year-old was just too strong and raced into a 5-2 lead, and he finished things off at 7-3.
There was some consolation for Anderson, though, as he will rise to his highest world ranking of fifth next week, and earn £1.125 million (about R19.76 million) as the runner-up – with Djokovic claiming £2.25 million (about R39.08 million).