Roland Garros: Novak Djokovic beats Pierre-Hugues Herbert in straight sets

The Serb is seeking a fourth Roland Garros title and record-extending 25th major

By Web Desk
May 29, 2024
Novak Djokovic during his first-round match in French Open. - AFP

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic triumphed over French wild card Pierre-Hugues Herbert with a commanding 3-0 victory in a riveting first-round clash at the French Open.

The match, held at the iconic Roland Garros Stadium, saw the defending champion's precision and resilience shine through as he clinched the first set 6-4.

142-ranked Herbert, buoyed by the home crowd, put up a fierce fight in the second set, pushing Djokovic to a tie-breaker. However, Djokovic's experience prevailed, winning the tie-breaker 7-3 to take the second set 7-6.

In the third set, Herbert continued to challenge the Serbian star, but Djokovic maintained his composure to secure another 6-4 set win, sealing his advance to the second round.

It must be noted that Djokovic, who is seeking a fourth Roland Garros title and a record-extending 25th major, is enduring his worst run since 2018.

Djokovic, 37, has not won a title in 2024 and has yet to make a final. Semi-final spots at the Australian Open and Monte Carlo Masters remain his best performances.

He also suffered the indignity of being accidentally hit on the head by a metal water bottle in Rome, causing nausea and dizziness.

When asked to elaborate on his difficulties so far this season ahead of the first-round, Djokovic opted for discretion.

“Various things have been happening in the past couple of months, but I don’t want to get into it. I don’t want to open Pandora’s Box.

“What has happened, happened, and it’s in the past.

“I know exactly what I need to do in a grand slam environment. I’ve experienced that 24 times in my career.”