Novak Djokovic has had enough. The Serbian superstar finally hit back at doubters who question his litany of injuries in a post-match spray after demolishing Alex de Minaur. FOLLOW LIVE


Novak Djokovic didn’t play like a man suffering from a hamstring complaint as he humiliated Australian Alex de Minaur on Monday night.

In fact, he ‘felt fantastic’ during the straight sets demolition that lasted barely two hours.

And such was the ruthlessness of the performance, and how free Djokovic looked as he glided across the court, it wasn’t long before sceptics popped up and wondered just how bad that hamstring injury could have been.

During Djokovic’s last appearance at Melbourne Park – in 2021, when he claimed a record ninth Australian Open – the Serbian star revealed he competed with a torn abdominal muscle suffered in the third round, and was hampered by it throughout the second week of the tournament.

But the constant speculation about the severity – and veracity – of his injuries is starting to wear thin with Djokovic, who took time out in the Serbian segment of his post-match press conference hit back.

“I leave the doubting to those people – let them doubt,” he said in Serbian to his country’s media.

“Only my injuries are questioned. When some other players are injured, then they are the victims, but when it is me, I am faking it. It is very interesting… I don’t feel that I need to prove anything to anyone.

“I have got the MRI, ultrasound and everything else, both from two years ago and now. Whether I will publish that in my documentary or on the social media, depends on how I feel. Maybe I will do I it, maybe I won’t.

“I am not really interested at this point what people are thinking and saying.

“It is fun, it is interesting to see how the narrative surrounding me continues, narrative that is different compared to other players that have been going through similar situation. But I am used to it, and it just gives me extra strength and motivation. So I thank them for that.”


Alex de Minaur says Novak Djokovic could be untouchable if he reproduces the level of tennis he delivered to oust the Aussie in straight sets on Monday night.

The nine-time Australian Open champion crushed the 22nd-seed Aussie 6-2 6-1 6-2 in a display which put his rivals — including quarter-final opponent Andrey Rublev — on notice.

Rublev said earlier on Monday he expected to be facing Djokovic and his prophecy looked certain to be fulfilled within 15 minutes of the first game of a match the Serbian dominated.

Such was his superiority as he moved one win closer to Andre Agassi’s record of 26 consecutive singles wins at Melbourne Park, de Minaur said Djokovic was bound for a 10th Australian Open.

“I think what I experienced today was probably Novak very close to his best, I would say,” de Minaur said.

“To me, if that’s the level, I think he’s definitely the guy that’s going to take the title.”

Djokovic said post-match that his confidence levels had risen after getting through the de Minaur match unscathed.

And with his body improving and becoming less of a focus, he can start to hone in on his ambition of another Melbourne Park triumph.

De Minaur added he felt like Djokovic could hit winners from anywhere on the court during the three-set blitz.

“He hasn’t done what he’s done in this sport without knowing how to play this level,” he said.

“Look, I knew what to expect. Ultimately you go out there with a plan, you try to execute it. “At times your opponent makes it pretty difficult to execute a plan. I think today that’s what he was doing.

“He was what felt like on another level to mine. I was just trying to hang on there. At the start was very solid, then he loosened up even more and started swinging. It felt like he could hit

winners from every place in the court.”

Originally published as Australian Open Day 9 live scores: Schedule, order of play, highlights, results

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *