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Djokovic too good for Nadal in Monte Carlo

Novak Djokovic overpowered eight-time champion Rafael Nadal to reach the final of the Monte Carlo Masters.

Djokovic was too good for Nadal in Monte Carlo. Credit: Reuters

Djokovic, the world number one, will meet Tomas Berdych in Sunday's final and victory will see the Serb become the first player to sweep the opening three ATP World Tour Masters 1000s of the season.

The 27-year-old has not dropped a set on his 2015 clay-court debut this week and he was simply too good for Nadal as he closed out a comfortable 6-3 6-3 victory in one hour and 38 minutes.

Nadal managed an early break but Australian Open champion Djokovic levelled at 2-2 and broke the Spaniard in the eighth game to take a stranglehold on the first set.

Djokovic's second-set pressure told in the seventh game as he broke for a 4-3 lead and he rattled off the final two games, with only Berdych now in his way from adding the Monte Carlo title to his March Masters wins in Indian Wells and Miami.

Sixth seed Berdych booked a spot in his fourth Masters 1000 final by ending the run of wild card entry Gael Monfils 6-1 6-4.

Murray 'distracted' by Djokovic falling down

Andy Murray blamed himself after suffering more Melbourne misery at the hands of Novak Djokovic on Sunday, losing the pair's third Australian Open final with a dramatic late collapse.

Murray didn't look impressed with the runner's up prize. Credit: PA

After the first two sets were split in two hours and 32 minutes, Murray looked to be in command against an apparently ailing Djokovic when he broke for a 2-0 lead in the third.

However, from then on the 27-year-old Scot won just one of the next 13 games as a rejuvenated Djokovic raised his level to secure a fifth Australian Open and eighth grand slam title with a 7-6 (7/5) 6-7 (4/7) 6-3 6-0 win in three hours and 39 minutes.

The third set was frustrating because I got a bit distracted when he fell on the ground after a couple of shots. It appeared that he was cramping and then I let that distract me a little bit.

That's what I'm most disappointed about, not so much the fourth set because I think, especially at the end of it, he was just going for everything and it was going in.

– Andy Murray

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Djokovic claims third set 6-3 against Murray

Djokovic is two sets up against Murray. Credit: Reuters

Novak Djokovic leads Andy Murray 2-1 in sets at the Australian Open final after winning the third 6-3.

Murray appeared to be in the ascendancy after breaking in the opening game of the set and holding immediately afterwards, but Djokovic moved through the gears to claim the next three games and race into a 3-2 lead.

He forced three breaks points at 4-3 on the Murray serve and the Scot showed his frustration by smashing his racket on the ground when the Serbian won the second of those.

Djokovic needed just one of his three set points to hold serve and give himself the upper hand at Melbourne Park.

Murray breaks Djokovic in opening game of third set

Andy Murray has broken Novak Djokovic in the opening game of the third set after fighting his way back to one set all in the Australian Open final.

World number one Djokovic slipped as he attempted to return a powerful Murray shot, ensuring the Scot made the first of two break points count.

Murray appeared to be in the ascendancy after holding with a love service game to lead 2-0 in the third.

Murray fights back to win second set against Djokovic

Murray secured a crucial second set win in Melbourne. Credit: Reuters

Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are tied at one set all after the Scot fought back to win the second set 7-6 (7-4).

Vying to lift his first ever Australian Open title, Murray fashioned four set points in the decisive tie break, and clinched the set with an inspired return on the third.

Djokovic had earlier clinched an epic opening set in 72 minutes after an equally tense tie break which he surrendered with a second serve return into the net.

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Djokovic and Murray enter second set tie break

Djokovic won the first set against Murray. Credit: Reuters

Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic will contest a second set tie break with the match delicately poised.

Vying to lift his first ever Australian Open title, Murray couldn't take advantage of set point at 5-4 on the Djokovic serve.

The Serbian had earlier clinched an epic opening set in 72 minutes after a tense tie break which he surrendered with a second serve return into the net.

Murray breaks Djokovic back in second set

Murray has broken Djokovic back in the second set. Credit: Reuters

Andy Murray has clawed Novak Djokovic back to 4-4 in the second set after breaking the Serbian with a ferocious forehand winner.

World number one Djokovic clinched the opening set in 72 minutes after a tense tie break which could have gone either way.

Murray targets 'big upset' against Djokovic in Australian Open final

Murray is aiming to win his first ever Australian Open. Credit: Reuters

Andy Murray believes it will take 'a big upset' to beat world number Novak Djokovic in Melbourne on Sunday.

Murray has impressed at this year's tournament but knows he will need to step through the gears in order to win an Australian Open final at the fourth attempt.

"Novak has a fantastic record here," Murray explained during a press conference on Saturday. "He loves the court and conditions, it would be quite a big upset if I win."

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