Top favourite Novak Djokovic had to play Alex de Minaur in the round of 16, and the Australian had the crowd on his side – but ultimately no chance.
The lightness is back, and the thigh holds:
With a demonstration of power, tennis star Novak Djokovic put an end to doubts about his fitness for
doubts about his fitness and reached the quarter-finals of the Australian Open.
Open. The 35-year-old Serb outclassed his rival in a highly one-sided
in a highly one-sided match in the last 16 on Monday.
Australian Alex de Minaur is in a very lopsided round of 16 matches on Monday.
6:2, 6:1, 6:2 in just 2:06 hours. Unlike in the previous two rounds
Djokovic’s left thigh did not cause him any problems and his record-breaking
There seems to be hardly anything standing in the way of his record-breaking mission.
“Not ideal”: Djokovic pain-free thanks to painkillers
“I didn’t feel anything at all, today was great,” said
Djokovic said afterwards, visibly relieved. He takes “a lot”
a lot” of painkillers these days, “it’s not ideal,” but “today was the best day in the tournament.
was the best day in the tournament, hopefully, it stays that way”.
Boris Becker was also impressed. “He has taken it up a notch”,
the Eurosport pundit said of his former protégé: “The question was.
The question was: How is his thigh? He answered himself
: Good enough to win the tournament as well.” That was “the
most important message”.
Becker had the impression “that he was bluffing”.
But even the six-time Grand Slam tournament winner was not impressed by the behaviour of
Djokovic’s behaviour in the matches before, when he demanded breaks for treatment
and dropped to the hard court with his face contorted in pain.
face contorted in pain, irritated him: “Sometimes you get the impression that he’s bluffing.
bluffing. Sometimes you get the impression he can’t finish the match.
finish the match. It’s kind of between heaven and hell. It is
difficult for the opponent to adjust to that.”
Because of that injury, and the strong performance of the No.
22nd seed de Minaur, Australian fans had hoped for a surprise.
hope for a surprise – but that hope was quickly dashed at Rod Laver Arena.
Laver Arena. Djokovic was wide awake right from the start, physically
and superior in almost all respects. “I can’t
I can’t say I’m sorry you didn’t see a longer match,” Djokovic said.
longer match,” Djokovic told the fans.
Nadal record is still firmly in sight
De Minaur lacked the quality to pull off a coup against the
who is just three wins away from his 22nd Grand Slam win.
Grand Slam tournament victory. This would put Djokovic in the final
with record-holder Rafael Nadal on 29 January. “This is
his life’s dream,” Becker knows.
On Wednesday, Djokovic, who has been undefeated at the Australian Open for 25 matches
the semi-finals against the Russian Andrei Rublyov.
semi-final ticket. The 25-year-old had previously beaten Denmark in a thrilling five-set thriller.
five-set thriller against Denmark’s young star Holger Rune (19).
almost certain defeat in a five-set thriller against Denmark’s young star Holger Rune (19).
6:3, 3:6, 6:3, 4:6, 7:6 (11:9) thanks to a lucky net roller on match point.
on match point.