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First hard-court title of 2022 for Djokovic in Tel Aviv

Novak Djokovic won the final on Sunday evening against Marin Čilić.

Novak Djokovic Novak Djokovic (AI/Reuters/Panoramic)

Serb Novak Djokovic, the top seed, defeated Croat Marin Čilić, the second seed, 6-3, 6-4 to win the Tel Aviv Open title at Expo Tel Aviv on Sunday.

It is Djokovic’s first trophy on a hard court this year – and his 89th career title.

The Serb, who was playing his eighth event in singles, is the first man to win a tour-level title on all three surfaces this season.

ATP Titles, all-time

Connors, 109
Federer, 103
Lendl, 94
Nadal, 92
Djokovic, 89

Djokovic also extends his head-to-head record over Cilic to a staggering 19-2.

Djokovic: “Great confidence from this week”

“I played some very good tennis, I think. I [didn’t] drop a set the entire week,” Djokovic said afterwards. “I hadn’t played a tournament in three months, so it was really extra motivation for me to really do well, particularly because people have been so friendly and so supportive of me throughout the week. I’m taking some great confidence into next week as well.”

Djokovic, ranked No 7, didn’t lose a set in four matches. He beat Spaniard Pablo Andujar (6-0, 6-3), Canadian lucky loser Vasek Pospisil (7-6 (5), 6-3) and Russian Roman Safiullin (6-1, 7-6 (3)) ahead of his victory.

The Serb, who is still ranked seventh, is now expected at Astana, where he will meet Cristian Garin in the first round. His expected path, as seed No4, leads to another match-up against Cilic in quarter-final and an eventual semi-final against Daniil Medvedev.

Novak Djokovic, Tel Aviv 2022 (AI/Reuters/Panoramic)

For the first time this season, Djokovic will spend three weeks in a row playing competitive tennis if you include the Laver Cup, where he played two singles (one win, one loss) and one doubles (one win).

Čilić, ranked No 16, defeated Austrian wildcard Dominic Thiem (6-7 (6), 6-2, 6-4), qualifier Liam Broady (W/O) and Frenchman Constant Lestienne (7-5, 6-3).

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