Novak Djokovic (R) of Serbia and Kevin Anderson of South Africa pose with their trophies during the awarding ceremony at the 2018 Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), on December 29, 2018.
"Being honest, I'm satisfied the way I was playing tennis".
Anderson had the better start into the match, broke Djokovic in the ninth game and served the opening set out in the following.
Djokovic was patient before pouncing late in the second set, claiming the pivotal break in the 12th game, but was then uncharacteristically wasteful in a tense decider, with four match-point opportunities going begging. And this is what you want to see in sport - young players showing their courage and stepping up.
"It was one of the best match points I have ever played", he said. They have shown they can challenge top three players for titles. "The match (in Abu Dhabi) is a step forward for me, that's the main thing". "I am more or less satisfied with how the body held", he said.More news: Prince George Broke Three Royal Traditions This Christmas
The 31-year-old Serb is now six Majors behind Federer and three adrift of Rafael Nadal, but is likely to keep up the pressure on his rivals this upcoming season considering how he recaptured his dominating form in the second half of 2018. I was happy with my game tonight and I can leave with a ton of positives. I played three good matches and it is always a great way to start the new season.
In the super tiebreak, Khachanov raced away to a 5-1 lead aided by a couple of unforced errors from Thiem and didn't face much resistance as he wrapped up the match in 10-3 in an hour and 24 minutes.
"He is coming back from injury like I am, so we are kind of in the same situation, " said Tsonga, who enters the tournament on an injury-protected ranking.
The three-day MWTC, which is now well established as an annual season-opener, attracted thousands of fans who witnessed high-quality tennis action as the players battled it out for the victor takes all prize of U.S. $250,000.