World number one Novak Djokovic blew away Russian challenger Daniil Medvedev in three straight sets 7-5 6-2 6-2 on Sunday to win a record 9th Australian Open title.
The victory also gave the Serbian his 18th Grand Slam title, two shy from record holders, Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal.
For Medvedev, it was another hope dashed for a first Grand Slam victory.
He lost to Dominic Thiem in the US Open last year.
Much like Dominic Thiem in last year’s final, Djokovic faced an opponent desperate for success and his own seat at the Grand Slam table.
Unlike Thiem, who pushed Djokovic to five sets, Medvedev never really threatened in his second Grand Slam final.
Djokovic made a mockery of the Russian’s 20-match winning streak and his pre-match barb that all the pressure to win was on the champion.
He broke him seven times for the match and closed out the one-sided contest with a net-rush and a brilliant leaping volley.
Having extended his unbeaten record in nine finals at Melbourne Park, the Serb roared in triumph and wrapped up his team in a group hug.
After acknowledging Medvedev’s congratulations, Djokovic thanked the blue centre court during the trophy ceremony.
“I would like to thank Rod Laver Arena. I love you each year more and more. It’s been a love affair that keeps growing. Thank you so much,” he said.
“On the court, he’s (Medvedev) definitely one of the toughest players that I ever faced in my life.
“It’s a matter of time when you hold a Grand Slam that’s for sure. If you don’t mind waiting a few more years.”
Djokovic now has won six Grand Slam titles after the age of 30, equalling Nadal’s record.
He had said pre-match that Medvedev was the man to beat in Melbourne Park and seemed determined to do it quickly as he slammed down an ace first point and broke Medvedev immediately.
In a thrilling match point, Djokovic raced around the court before ending up at the net where he leapt high to smash a lob past the Russian and claim his second hat-trick of titles at Melbourne Park after his 2011-13 treble.
“Never easy to speak when you just lost a final of a Grand Slam,” said Medvedev.
“But I’ll try to do my best, better than on court I hope.
“First of all congrats to Novak and your team. Nine Grand Slams in Australia. 18 in total is amazing and probably not your last one. I have no words to say.