Novak Djokovic seemingly forgot that Stefanos Tsitsipas was his opponent in the 2021 French Open final. On Monday, Djokovic saw off Alex de Minaur 6-2 6-1 6-2 to progress into the Australian Open quarterfinal. When addressing the fact that he is the only Grand Slam champion alive in the Australian Open, Djokovic stunningly started explaining how Tsitsipas could not be taken lightly despite never making a Major final.
"Being the only guy remaining in the tournament that has won a Grand Slam, of course flatters me but I don't think it's going to make too big of a difference, to be honest. Maybe it will to some extent, I mean, for me, but maybe not for the other guys.
I don't know. I know Tsitsipas, for example, probably the most experienced guy out all of them, all the quarterfinalists. He has played already the final stages of a Grand Slam quite a few times. I think he has never played a finals, am I wrong?" Djokovic said after his Australian Open round-of-win, per Musab Abid.
Djokovic then realized his mistake
When reminded by reporters that he came from two sets down to beat Tsitsipas in the 2021 French Open final, Djokovic corrected himself and insisted Tsitsipas looks like someone ready for a Grand Slam title.
"That's right. That's right. Sorry, my bad. What I wanted to say is I wanted to compliment him because he's someone that looks ready to go for the title, and the way he has been playing, he's been coming closer and closer," Djokovic said.
Meanwhile, Djokovic is set to face next Andrey Rublev. Since Djokovic and Tsitsipas are not in the same part of the draw, they could potentially only meet in the Australian Open final. After a dominant win over Alex de Minaur, Djokovic seems to be doing better with his hamstring and is now just three wins away from winning a record 10th Australian Open title.