Novak Djokovic continued his perfect record against Gael Monfils as the Frenchman wilted in the Melbourne heat at the Australian Open. Djokovic made it 15 wins in as many matches against Monfils with a 4-6 6-3 6-1 6-3 victory in the second round on Thursday.
After a promising start, Monfils lost his way on Rod Laver Arena as temperatures neared 40 degrees Celsius in Melbourne. The talented yet underachieving 31-year-old was unable to settle after beginning to seriously struggle midway through the second set, eventually falling in two hours, 45 minutes to the 12-time grand slam champion.
Djokovic, still wearing a sleeve on his right arm as he continues his return from an elbow injury, will face Spanish 21st seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the third round.
The Serbian, a six-time champion at Melbourne Park, had made a nervy start against Monfils in a clash that never reached any great heights due to the heat. Unforced errors, including several double faults, saw Monfils gifted a 3-0 lead, an advantage the Frenchman quickly handed back.
However, Monfils closed out the first set before beginning to battle in the heat, struggling to continue with his usual serving motion in the sixth game of the second set.
Djokovic was unwilling to show his opponent any weakness and he raced into a two-sets-to-one lead. Monfils had no answers to the Serbian or the heat, suffering yet another loss to Djokovic, who claimed the decisive break of the fourth set in the eighth game.
Djokovic  bt Monfils 4-6 6-3 6-1 6-3
Djokovic – 31/40
Monfils – 34/65
Djokovic – 5/11
Monfils – 5/15
BREAK POINTS WON
Djokovic – 7/15
Monfils – 3/8
FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Djokovic – 66
Monfils – 53
PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Djokovic – 73/45
Monfils – 63/41
Djokovic – 128
Monfils – 103