Novak Djokovic has secured his fifth Australian Open title with a four set 7-6 (7-5), 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 6-0 victory over Andy Murray.
Djokovic won the second of three break points he'd fashioned on Murray's serve at 1-1 in the first set with an unanswerable winning return which flew past the Scot and bounced perfectly on the line.
The Serbian started today's quest for Australian Open title number five in the kind of unstoppable form that many argue make him the game's most complete player ever.
But Murray was not ready to cave in without a fight and this fascinating opening set which lasted more than an hour saw breaks of serve in four consecutive games.
It was eventually won in 72 minutes by Djokovic after a tense tie break as Murray hit a simple volley into the net to give his opponent set point. Murray found the net once again with a second serve return, and first blood went to Djokovic.
It was always going to be difficult for either player to maintain these intensity levels throughout and inevitably the errors crept up in tandem with fatigue.
A break down, Murray clawed Novak Djokovic back to 4-4 with a ferocious forehand winner, but couldn't take advantage of set point at 5-4 in the second on the Serbian's serve.
It required another tie break to settle this one, and this time Murray powered into a 5-2 lead, forcing four set points. He took number three with an inspired return which Djokovic had no answer to.
Murray appeared to be in the ascendancy after breaking in the opening game of the third set and holding immediately afterwards, but Djokovic moved through the gears to claim the next three and race into a 3-2 lead.
He forced three break points at 4-3 on the Murray serve and the Scot showed his frustration by smashing his racket on the ground.
The Aussie crowd booed at Murray's antics as Djokovic won the second of those to ensure he would serve for the set.
The world's finest player needed just one of his three set points to hold serve and give himself the upper hand at Melbourne Park.
Djokovic took control of the fourth set and the entire Championship with a treble break as he raced into a 5-0 lead.
Murray's body language slumped and he was showing signs of defeat for the first time, as an increasingly confident Djokovic took advantage by pouncing on the 27 year-old serve time after time.
The world number one served for the championship at 5-0 and clinched his record fifth title with an impeccable serve and volley.