Novak Djokovic feeling a ‘little bit fatigued’ after ‘cat-and-mouse’ match

Australian Open
Novak Djokovic takes his shirt off

His victory over Daniil Medvedev took quite a bit out of him, but Novak Djokovic is confident he will be “ready for the next one”.

World No 1 Djokovic required three hours and 15 minutes to see off the Russian 6-4, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2, 6-3 and book his place in the quarter-final against Kei Nishikori.

The Serb admitted after the gruelling encounter, which finished at 12:43am local time, that he started to feel the effects during the latter stages.

“I didn’t feel so great, you know, in the last 20 minutes of the match,” he said.

“So we’ll see how the body reacts, but I’m confident I can recover and I can be ready for the next one.

“It was just, you know, a little bit of fatigue, a little bit of back. Nothing major. But there are a couple of things that have surfaced.

“Even though it was three sets to one, it seems like a five-set match, really. It was draining physically a lot, because you just could not rely on one-two punch tactics, you know, in today’s match so often.”

However, he had nothing but praise for the 15th seed Medvedev, who had a 2-1 lead in the second set and had Djokovic 0/40.

“It was kind of a cat-and-a-mouse game for most of the match,” he said. “That’s why it was so lengthy. We had rallies of 40, 45 exchanges.

“That’s why I think it was physically exhausting because of the fact that we didn’t really allow each other to think that we can make a lot of unforced errors and give away points.

“His backhand is very, very solid. He didn’t give me much from that side, but, you know, you can’t always play on the forehand. You have to open up the court and try to be patient and construct the point.”


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