Novak Djokovic's Dominance Will Lead to Third Straight Title in Melbourne

Mike HoagCorrespondent IIJanuary 18, 2013

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 18:  Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates a point in his third round match against Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic during day five of the 2013 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 18, 2013 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

You know when you’re being compared to Andre Agassi and Roger Federer that you’re doing something right.

ESPN’s Greg Garber compared Novak Djokovic’s dominance at Melbourne to the impressive runs by the two aforementioned tennis greats.

Djokovic, winner of 17 consecutive Australian Open matches, has won the past two events and three of the past five Down Under.

He’s not done yet, either.

The Serbian star has relatively cruised through the first three rounds of play and is positioning himself to make a run at third straight Australian Open championship. That’s something Agassi and Federer both failed to do, despite their massive success at the season’s first major event.

In fact, no one has won three straight Australian Open titles in the history of the tournament.

The road to history won’t be easy, but Djokovic is skilled enough and experienced against all of the remaining competition. That will only help his current level of play.

His serve has yet to be broken throughout the first three rounds of play, and it is looking better and better each set.

If there was ever a favorite to win a Grand Slam, the spotlight has to turn to Djokovic in the Australian Open.

It’s almost become automatic for the world’s No. 1 male tennis player. The current ATP rankings have him slated comfortably above Federer and Andy Murray.

World No. 4 Rafael Nadal is not in contention due to a stomach virus that struck during the waning stages of his recovery from a torn patella tendon in his left knee. With Nadal out and Federer rapidly climbing in age, the cards are stacked in Djokovic’s favor.

Djokovic also holds a 10-7 edge against Murray in head-to-head matchups, including a win over the Scottsman in the 2012 Australian Open semifinals.

You have to believe that things will continue to fall in his favor as long as he keeps up his excellent play and doesn’t try to do too much.

It’s the first major tournament of the year, and Djokovic has had plenty of time to rest and prepare for a deep run at this potentially historic victory. The conditions are there, and he’s playing great tennis. Is there anyone that can stop him on the aqua plexicushion courts of Melbourne Park?