1/28/13 3:47 AM | Johan Lindahl
Only a few hours after winning his fourth Australian Open trophy, Novak Djokovic was already feeling the presence of the French Open, more than just a mirage in the tennis spring.
But the No. 1 was working at enjoying his 6-7(2), 7-6(3), 6-3, 6-2 win over Andy Murray which made the Serb the first man in the post-1968 Open era to win three titles in a row in Melbourne.
Celebrations lasted well into the morning for Djokovic and his team, with the owner of six Slam titles and flushed with success after winning a battle of defense where the first break came after 34 service holds between him and Murray.
"The priority for me now is to enjoy this victory. In life, you know, you don't get many of the opportunities to win Grand Slams. As a tennis player, that's a pinnacle of the ambitions and of the success. So I'll try to enjoy it for few days with the people I love the most, family, friends, and team."
While other ATP events including the twin Masters 1000 tournaments at Indian Wells followed immediately by Miami are also on his calendar, the unmistakable odor of the Roland Garros clay is in the air.
"There are still four or five months till the French Open," said last year's losing finalist to Rafael Nadal. "Of course, I want to go all the way in French Open. I went to the finals last year and had a great match against Rafa, but he's always the favorite on that surface and he's the ultimate player to beat on clay. But I think if I continue on playing well, stay healthy, I can have a chance."
The Melbourne final which lasted "only" three and a half hours compared to the nearly six it took a year ago to put down Nadal, started to go the Serb's way when a floating feather seemed to run the fortunes of opponent Murray. Serving in the second-set tiebreaker after winning the first set, the Scot paused between first and second serves to grab a floating bit of bird fluff. He double-faulted to start what proved to be his downfall.
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Great Britain, United Kingdom