Novak Djokovic thrown off course by ‘hurricane conditions’ during semi-final

Novak Djokovic wrapped in a towel

Novak Djokovic has bemoaned the impact of Mother Nature during his French Open semi-final against Dominic Thiem.

After Wednesday’s washout at Roland Garros, it meant both men’s last-four clashes were played on Friday and Djokovic and Thiem only managed to start their match late in the day.

Rain affected play and it meant the match was played over two days and, to make matters worse, it was quite blustery.

Thiem eventually prevailed as he beat the world number one 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 7-5.

“One of the worst conditions I’ve ever been part of,” said Djokovic. “Obviously when you’re playing in hurricane kind of conditions, it’s hard to perform your best.

“It’s really just kind of surviving in these kind of conditions and trying to hold your serve and play one ball more in the court than your opponent. That’s what it felt like playing, to be honest.

“[Thiem] played great, especially in the important moments. Made some really good slices and passing shots. He just managed to put one extra ball in the court at the end of the match. He’s playing great tennis. He showed why he’s one of the best players in the world and I wish him the best for the final.”

The defeat means Djokovic’s hopes of holding all four majors at the same time are over for another year while he is also no longer able to win the Calendar Grand Slam.

“There is always something large at stake when you’re one of the top players of the world and play in the biggest tournaments,” he said.

“It’s not any different this time.”

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