Andy Murray's bid to claim back-to-back grand slam titles was ended by Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open final in Melbourne.
The first two, serve-dominated sets were decided on tie-breaks before Djokovic claimed the first break of the match late in the third.
It proved a pivotal moment with US Open champion Murray, who was struggling with blisters on his right foot and a hamstring problem, unable to mount a fightback as Djokovic completed a 6-7 (2/7) 7-6 (7/3) 6-3 6-2 success.
Murray required a medical time-out at the end of the third set to treat a nasty-looking blister and he went on to lose the next two as Djokovic claimed his third successive Melbourne crown.
Of the toe, the Scot said: "It's just a pretty large blister. You get them - it happens. It was just a bit sore when I was running around. It's not like pulling a calf muscle or something. It just hurts when you run, but it's not something which stops you from playing.
"Ninety per cent of the players on tour will have played this tournament with some sort of blister or problem.
"It had no bearing on the result."
More frustrating for the world number three, who had been hoping to become the first man in the Open era to win his second major immediately after claiming his first, was his inability to take one of three break points immediately after edging the opening set.
"At this level it can come down to a few points here and there," he added. "My biggest chance probably came at the start of the second set but I didn't quite take it. When Novak had his chance at the end of the third he got his."