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By Chris Oddo | Monday January 15, 2018

Novak Djokovic made his long awaited return to Grand Slam tennis and brushed away most lingering doubts about his elbow issues with a convincing 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 win over American Donald Young on Tuesday at Melbourne.

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The Serb, who had not played since last July, is bidding for his record seventh Australian Open title this year.

“It’s just great to be back on a tennis court,” Djokovic said on court after the match. “There’s no better place to start playing after six months of injuries than here in Australia. It’s been a long time for me without an official match.”

Djokovic struck 33 winners to 24 for Young, and saved one of two break points face. He won 79 percent of his first-serve points and 71 percent of his second offerings, and really did some damage against Young’s serve.

The No.14 seed won 53 percent of his first-serve return points and broke serve six times on 25 opportunities, never giving the American a chance to relax in this one-sided affair.

"The first two sets went extremely well, considering that I haven't played for six months," Djokovic said. "The third was, you know, up and down a little bit, but in general was a great performance."

The victory took one hour and 51 minutes to complete for Djokovic. He’ll likely move on to face Gael Monfils in the second round on Thursday. The Frenchman currently leads Spaniard qualifier Jaume Munar two sets to love.


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