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Wimbledon 2015: Novak Djokovic staves off upset from Kevin Anderson in 5 sets

Novak Djokovic staved off an early exit at Wimbledon, winning a two-day marathon match against Kevin Anderson in five sets.

Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports

Men's top seed Novak Djokovic held off an upset in the Round of 16 at Wimbledon and advanced to the quarterfinals on Tuesday. Djokovic was facing No. 14 seed Kevin Anderson and was down two sets before coming back to win it in five, 6-7(6), 6-7(6), 6-1, 6-4, 7-5.

Djokovic, to this point, hadn't struggled with any of his opponents in this year's tournament, downing them all in straight sets and never looked like he was in trouble at all. But Anderson took the first set to a tiebreak and eked out a win in said tiebreak. He took a 3-1 lead in the second set with a solid break of Djokovic, but Djokovic battled back to even things up at 4-4 with breaks of his own.

He stayed on track from there, and went to another tiebreak. Djokovic got out well ahead in the tiebreak, leading 3-0 and then 4-2, but Anderson fought back and ultimately won that tiebreak, as well. He was playing incredible tennis out there, and took a lot of risks. He used his lanky frame and length to play balls all over the court, not being afraid to step up to the net and most of the time, it paid off for him.

Djokovic wasn't about to go quietly at this stage, starting the third set off by holding serve and then breaking Anderson without issue.  The rest of that set went Djokovic's way without issue, and he took it at 6-1. He didn't dominate the fourth set as easily, but he wound up winning that one as well at 6-4. Unfortunately, play was not moved to Center Court where the lights are, so it was continued until Tuesday.

The fifth set was fitting of the match as a whole. Both men held serve until 5-5. Anderson relied on a punishing serve -- recording eight aces to bring his total up to 40 for the match, and winning 20-of-23 first serve opportunities in the set -- but an inopportune double fault gave Djokovic a break point opportunity, which he seized to go up 6-5. Djokovic scored four straight points after going down 30-0 in the final game to win the match.

We're now heading into the quarterfinals with all of the favorites still intact. Roger Federer, Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka will join Djokovic in the quarterfinals. Djokovic will face No. 9 seed Marin Cilic, with a potential meeting with Wawrinka coming in the semifinals.

Wawrinka prevented Djokovic from earning his first ever title at Roland Garros, besting him in the finals prior to Wimbledon. Federer will take on Gilles Simon and Murray will face Vasek Pospisil before a potential meeting in the semifinals.