For one set, the first one of this men's singles Wimbledon semifinal, you felt Richard Gasquet would make a match of it against Novak Djokovic. But, once that opening set went the Serbian's way, it was as easy as one, two, three for the defending champion, who cruised into another final at the All England Club.
Djokovic has the outstanding ability to play the right shots and with it win the crucial points under pressure pretty much all the time, and that really was the difference in this match, with Gasquet not playing too badly, even if it might not have been the inspired tennis he managed against Stanislas Wawrinka in the quarterfinals.
The Frenchman, though, looked like he did not have the belief he could stay with Djokovic, who has lost to Gasquet only once in his entire career, and that too eight years ago, for five sets, because once the first set went via a tie-breaker to the No.1 seed, the next couple were much more like the ones you expect in a Djokovic match – a break or two in each set, with barely a glimmer for his opponent to break back.
In the end, it was an easy-enough 7-6 (7-2), 6-4, 6-4 victory for Djokovic, who now awaits the winner of the second semifinal between Roger Federer and Andy Murray.
The two-time champion started the match in fantastic style, holding the opening game before breaking Gasquet for a 2-0 lead. However, Gasquet broke back immediately, and after neither of them gave away anything in their serves, it went into the tie-break.
There was only one player in that breaker, and indeed, from that tie-break onwards it was all Djokovic, despite numerous sumptuous backhands from Gasquet, which won him quite a few points, just not enough to bring those worry lines, which were very much evident in the first set, of the world number one to the fore.
That consistency and the ability to serve big on the big points weren't there, though, and against a player like Djokovic you need those to be able to trouble the Serbian.