Eastbourne: Novak Djokovic beats Vasek Pospisil as he prepares for Wimbledon

Novak Djokovic
Djokovic, a three-time champion at Wimbledon, is ranked fourth in the world
Eastbourne
Venue: Devonshire Park, Eastbourne Date: 26 June -1 July Coverage: Live across BBC TV, radio and online

Novak Djokovic beat Vasek Pospisil to reach the third round at Eastbourne.

In his first competitive match on grass this year, the Serb, who received a bye in round one, registered a 6-4 6-3 win.

It was Djokovic's first match since his defeat in the French Open quarter-finals earlier in the month as he continues his preparations for Wimbledon, which starts on 3 July.

He will face either Donald Young or his fellow American Jarden Donaldson in the third round.

American fifth seed Sam Querrey was beaten 6-3 7-5 by Russia's Daniil Medvedev, while France's Richard Gasquet beat American Francis Tiafoe 5-7 7-6 (7-4) 6-3.

Only seven of the 12 matches scheduled for Wednesday were completed as rain again ended play early.

Djokovic, playing in his first pre-Wimbledon grass-court tournament for seven years, said prior to the match that this year had been his toughest in tennis.

The match was scheduled for Tuesday but only nine minutes of play was possible on Centre Court before rain led to play being cancelled for the day.

Although he was not as his best against Pospisil, the first seed found his rhythm as the match progressed, with his service game looking strong.

He struggled for direction with his backhand but controlled play across the court, particularly through his powerful forehand.

Pospisil played aggressively but failed to build on Djokovic's second serve, eventually throwing his racquet away in annoyance as he failed to break Djokovic, who went on to serve out the match.

The 12-time Grand Slam champion has now won 25 of his 32 matches this year.

"It's good to not be one of the top favourites. It is liberating a bit, it releases a bit of the pressure," Djokovic said after the match.

"But the pressure is always there, you still feel it. It's part of who I am, what I do.

"In this stage of my life and career, it's trying to focus only on what comes up next, which doesn't mean that I don't want to win the trophies and so forth."

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