Novak Djokovic comes back to Dubai after almost two months of forced stop and, against Lorenzo Musetti, he closes the case without particular problems. The five-time champion of the tournament actually fixes the success at 6-3 6-3 and reaches at least in the second round the winner of the match between Karen Khachanov and Alex de Minaur.
Eighty days after the victory with Marin Cilic in the Davis Cup, the leader of the group plays as per protocol a game of enormous quantity. Musetti, who finds himself at 0-30 in the fourth game, commits a bloody double fault at 30-30 and loses control of the backhand in the heart of a prolonged exchange after the first tie.
Called to keep the break ahead, in an apparent state of tranquility, Djokovic goes up from 0-40 with the straight serve scheme and then completely eliminates the errors from the project with the available serve. The 6-3 is practically a logical consequence.
Djokovic takes control of the matter from the baseline and wins the vast majority of extended exchanges during the second set. Musetti, who adapts a rather wait-and-see tactic, does not even board the counter-break train in game number seven and basically raises the white flag.
The number one of the group, with the victory practically in his pocket, repeats the break operation in the final and closes at the first useful opportunity. Two hours and fifty-three minutes. Andy Murray needs so much to cross the first round stumbling block in Dubai.
The three-time Grand Slam champion, who finds O'Connell a decidedly difficult opponent, recovers a set of disadvantage and finds sufficiently valid weapons to avoid the tie break in the third and close with a mega-run of 8-1.
In the list of surprises the misstep of Marin Cilic against Jiri Vesely.
Simona Halep out in Doha
Simona Halep defeated in Doha in the match against Caroline Garcia. The two-time Grand Slam champion saves five break points between the first two batting rounds and misses a total of six chances in response in the middle.
The tenth game turns out to be fatal. Called to keep a break ahead also in the second set, in a day with poor lows and definitely full of highs, the Frenchwoman made no mistake and kept her serve until the finish line without particular difficulties.
The 6-4 6-3 final is emblematic. To note the success of Tereza Martincova against Elina Svitolina, who at the stroke of the three hours of play also lacks an advantage of 5-3 in the deciding set. The very delicate balance of the tie break is broken only in the final, with the Russian who effectively seals the success at 6-7 (5) 7-5 7-6 (5).
Coco Gauff, who from the week in Adelaide in the first week of the season was no longer able to move the zero from the box of victories, unlocks against Shelby Rogers with a very rocky 6-2 6-3. Petra Kvitova also starts well, who gets rid of with the same score as Begu.