ATP Monte-Carlo Interviews Djokovic: “This injury that has been present for last 10 days. I was on the medications every day, I was doing different therapies, injections, so forth.” - UBITENNIS
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ATP Monte-Carlo Interviews Djokovic: “This injury that has been present for last 10 days. I was on the medications every day, I was doing different therapies, injections, so forth.”

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TENNIS ATP Monte-Carlo – R. FEDERER/N. Djokovic 7-5, 6-2 An interview with Novak Djokovic

 

Q. The first set you tried. The second set it seemed you couldn’t do much more. What was going on for you?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, just a match to forget for me. It’s unfortunate that when you’re playing at this level against Roger, big tournament, that you are not able to play your game because something else is, you know, taking away all your energy and effort.

This injury that has been present for last 10 days, and I tried not to think or talk about it, I did everything I could really, I was on the medications every day, I was doing different therapies, injections, so forth.

But in the end of the day, the end of the tournament, semifinals is a good result. But I’m disappointed that I could not play as well as I could have. If I was healthy enough… From the end of the first and the whole second, every shot was pain, especially with the serve.

I couldn’t do much more than this. I gave my best really. I’m not trying to take away anything from Roger’s win. He deserves to be in the finals, no question about it.

I’m just very disappointed I wasn’t able to give better effort.

 

Q. Knowing all the problems that players have had with their wrist, what is your idea now about what to do? Take a rest? Wait for a big event when you’re really ready?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, the good thing is I don’t need to have a surgery. I don’t have any rupture or something like that. I’m going to go see doctors tonight and then tomorrow again have another MRI, see if anything changed in this seven days since I had the last one.

I just rest now. I cannot play tennis for some time. How long, I don’t know. It’s really not in my hands anymore. I’m going to rest and see when it can heal 100%, then I will be back on the court.

 

Q. Did you consider pulling out at any stage during the match, worrying you would make it worse by continuing?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I didn’t want to pull out because then people start talking different things about me and my withdraws and so forth. That was the main reason. I just held my strength, whatever I had, and wanted to play till the end.

 

Q. Did the pain kick in only today or was it there in the last couple days and you didn’t want to let us know?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: The pain was there every single day from 10 days ago. At some stages it was very painful. Good thing, between the first and second match I had a day off so I didn’t practice at all and I healed a little bit. Then again I started playing.

Yesterday’s conditions, long match, long rallies, heavy balls, definitely did not help the state of my arm. Since last night it was as it is now.

 

Q. Trying to be precise, can we write or say it is a tendonitis or is it something else?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I really don’t know what’s the diagnosis, to be honest. I heard so many things in last 10 days. Trust me, it’s complicated.

You can ask the official doctor.

 

Q. This problem you have, is it the first time you have it in your career?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yes.

 

Q. Do you feel it’s connected with the hard courts or some certain moment?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, this is the first time, to be honest. I think as a tennis player, you’re likely to always have some kind of stiffness in your arm, whatever your stronger arm is. It’s normal. We hit thousands of tennis balls every day. It’s normal to feel sore a little bit here and there, but it goes away after a few days. You do a lot of stretching. You do a lot of recovers. I’ve done everything the same.

It happened. Going to try to find out the causes.

 

Q. You said before you don’t want to withdraw and don’t play this tournament. Do you think this is the strength of your character, of your personality? At the same time, it’s your bad part? In the past, with the ankle, you play with the ankle because you have to play again and again and again. What about this part of your personality?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Listen, I don’t regret anything I’ve done in my life. I thought that at the certain moment it was the right thing to do. Last year I played with an injured ankle, but I won the tournament. This is the only time I won this tournament that is one of my favorites.

There is also something positive in everything you do. I try to approach life like that.

I am professional athlete. I fight. I compete. I don’t like to withdraw from tournaments. I don’t like to retire my matches. I like to play to the last point.

When I shake the hands of the opponent when I lose the match, that’s when the tournament is over for me. I will do anything in my power to play any tournament in the world where I am supposed to play   especially here which is at home.

I had two weeks between Miami and Monte Carlo. It’s not like I was tired or I had some long trips or something like that. It just happened during the practice week. Sometimes it just happens. Sometimes it’s not predictable.

 

Q. About the injury itself. Do you remember how you first noticed it? Was it in training, during a match?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, combination of things. It happened in two days. Obviously I practiced a lot. Maybe I started a bit too strong. The transition from hard court to clay, different balls, have probably taken its toll.

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Dominic Thiem reaches his first quarter final at the Australian Open

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Dominic Thiem eased past Gael Monfils 6-2 6-4 6-4 after 1 hour and 50 minutes on the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne to reach the quarter final at the Australian Open. Thiem has extended his winning streak to 6-0 in his head-to-head matches against Monfils.

 

He fought back from two sets to one down to beat Australia’s Alex Bolt in the second round, but he won eight of his past nine sets to advance to the quarter finals.

Thiem got two breaks in the first set and never faced a single break point in the entire match. The Austrian player converted his fourth break point after three deuces, as Monfils missed a backhand volley wide. Thiem started the third set with an early break in the first game, as Monfils hit an inside-out forehand wide from the middle of the court wide. Thiem won his next service games and held his final game at love.

Thiem will face Rafael Nadal in a re-match of last year’s Roland Garros final.

“I think that I played my best match so far at this year’s Australian Open. It’s a very good feeling. The score looks way easier than the match was. I think I was lucky to make an early break in each set and I was managing to hold my serve well. I am so happy because I am in the quarter final here for the first time”, said Thiem.

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Alexander Zverev tops Andrey Rublev to set Australian Open quarter final against Stan Wawrinka

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Alexander Zverev beat his friend Andrey Rublev 6-4 6-4 6-4 in one hour and 37 minutes to reach the quarter final at the Australian Open for the first time in his career and his third at Grand Slam level.

 

Zverev broke serve once in each set. The German player has not dropped a set at this year’s edition of the Australian Open.

Zverev ended Rublev’s 15-match winning streak. Rublev had not lost a match since October, winning four matches at the Davis Cup last November and back-to-back titles in Doha and Adelaide.

In the opening set Zverev earned his first break at 3-3, as Rublev hit a forehand into the net. He held his serve to consolidate the break and wrapped up the first set after 29 minutes, when Rublev hit a crosscourt backhand wide.

Zverev started the second set with an immediate break in the first game of the second set and closed it out with a hold at love with an ace after 29 minutes.

Zverev broke serve for the third time in the match in the ninth game of the third set to take a 5-4, when Rublev made a groundstroke error, and sealed the win with a forehand volley.

“It feels amazing. I played some great matches against some great opponents. This is Andrey’s first loss of the season, having won two tournaments and getting through to the fourth round with unbelievable tennis. I have known Andrey since we were ten years old. I think he will be top 15, top 10 very soon. I am just happy and I hope I can continue”,said Zverev.

Zverev will face Stan Wawrinka in the quarter final. The German star beat Wawrinka twice in their previous two head-to-head matches in St. Petersburg 2016 and Miami 2017.

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Stan Wawrinka edges Danil Medvedev in a five-set thriller to reach the quarter final at the Australian Open

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Three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka reached the quarter final at the Australian Open for the fifth time in his career with a 6-2 2-6 4-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-2 win over fourth seed and 2019 US Open finalist Danil Medvedev after 3 hours and 25 minutes. Wawrinka qualified for the last eight for the first time since 2017.

 

Wawrinka earned his first break in the fourth game, when Medvedev sent his backhand long. Wawrinka did not convert two more break points in the sixth game before breaking for the second time at love to close out the opening set 6-2 after 32 minutes. Wawrinka won 85% of his first serve points and hit 16 winners to 8 unforced errors in the opening set.

Medvedev broke in the third game of the second set to open up a 3-1 lead, when Wawrinka netted his forehand. The Russian player clinched the second set with three service winners at 5-2 to level the score.

Medvedev broke serve in the seventh game of the third set after a backhand error from Wawrinka and closed out the set with a service winner in the 10th game.

Wawrinka wasted a break point in the fourth game of the fourth set. Both players traded service holds en route to the tie-break. Wawrinka earned an immediate mini-break to open up a 3-0 lead in the tie-break. The former Australian Open champion hit a half-volley winner to cruise to a 5-2 lead and converted his first set point, when Medvedev netted a backhand in the ninth point.

Wawrinka broke Medvedev at 15 in the first game of the fifth set and saved three break points at 2-1. Wawrinka went up a double break in the seventh game and forced an error from Medvedev to wrap up the match, as he was serving for the win in the eighth game.

Wawrinka set up a quarter final against Alexander Zverev, who beat Andrey Rublev 6-4 6-4 6-4. Zverev beat Wawrinka twice in their two head-to-head matches in St. Petersburg 2016 and Miami 2017.

“That was an amazing match and an amazing atmosphere. It was really tough to play against Danil. It was really tough to play against Danil. I had to raise my level in the fourth and fifth sets. The level was super high and the atmosphere is something special here in Australia. I am finding solutions. I was losing a bit of confidence in the second and third sets, and was fighting against myself to play my game. I had to fight, stay positive and I am happy with the result”,said Wawrinka.

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