'I can understand Novak Djokovic', says ATP legend
by SIMONE BRUGNOLI | VIEW 3523
There is great concern and uncertainty about Novak Djokovic's condition. The former world number 1 showed up at the Australian Open with a left hamstring injury, which he had sustained during the Adelaide tournament. What initially appeared to be a minor problem is instead clearly affecting him.
The Serbian phenomenon has shown clear signs of suffering in the first two rounds of the Happy Slam, having to resort to the physiotherapist during his second round match against the Frenchman Enzo Couacoud. The 21-time Grand Slam champion admitted he is concerned about the condition of his knee and that he doesn't know if the situation will improve.
We recall that Nole is hunting for his tenth title in Melbourne Park, which would allow him to catch up with his eternal rival Rafael Nadal at 22 Grand Slams. The 35-year-old from Belgrade hasn't lost in Australia since 2018, but it won't be easy to get to the bottom of the tournament with a similar injury.
Speaking to Eurosport, Boris Becker took stock of Djokovic's conditions.
Boris Becker on Nole Djokovic
“You know who it is, the guy is drunk out of his mind, from the first point he’s been provoking, provoking!
He’s not here to watch tennis, he just wants to get in my head. You’ve heard him at least 10 times, I’ve heard him 50 times, what are you going to do about it? Why don’t you get him out of the stadium?” an exasperated Novak Djokovic said to the umpire.
“I can understand him. If four or five boozy fans come to the court with the motivation to disturb Novak during many points, then the referee has to intervene at some point because it becomes unfair”, the German said while speaking to Eurosport.
Becker said he encourages passionate fans, but only to a limit. “I like loud fans - passion and emotion are part of the game, but if they are really drunk, then they don't belong on a sports court,” he added. Former World No.
1 Mats Wilander recently expressed concern about Novak Djokovic's hamstring injury at the ongoing 2023 Australian Open. "That is not reassuring, because I don’t remember him saying anything like that about his body. I really don’t," Wilander said.
"Rafa [Nadal] is obviously always very honest and he gets asked all the time. You never really see Novak injured, and if he is, he’s always very quiet about it. So that’s a worry," Wilander said.