Novak Djokovic has qualified for his thirteenth quarterfinal at the Australian Open. Novak did not play to his best level in the first three rounds, as he suffered a hamstring injury and had to call for medical assistance. However, he showed no sign of discomfort against Alex De Minaur at Rod Laver Arena on Monday as Djokovic posted a 6-2 6-1 6-2 triumph in two hours and six minutes.
The Serb played his best game in 2023, staying focused from start to finish to outrun his rival and stay on the title track. Andy Roddick was delighted with what he saw from Novak, praising the Serb's game and stating that there is no place for the opponent to attack him when he plays like this.
Djokovic grabbed half the return points and kept De Minaur below the top ten winners. Novak made six breaks of 12 chances and never had a problem after his opening shot. The Serb hit 26 winners and 27 unforced errors and controlled the pace in shorter and later rallies to drop just five games and maintain his title hopes.
Novak got off to a strong start, feeling good on court and dropping five points from his games early. Alex kept in touch for the first four games before disappearing from the court for good. The Serb broke fast in the sixth game to open a 4-2 lead and clinched another return game for 5-2 after his opponent's error to close out the first game on 35 minutes.
With everything going for him, Novak dropped six points in his games in the second set and left the opposition well behind. Djokovic broke De Minaur in games two and four to build a 6-2, 5-0 lead in the blink of an eye and string nine straight games.
Taylor Fritz comments on Djokovic's injury
Taylor Fritz recently gave his opinion on players' injuries in the aftermath of Novak Djokovic's injury controversy. "Only my injuries are questioned. When some other players are injured, then they are the victims, but when it is me, I am faking it.
It is very interesting. I don’t feel that I need to prove anything to anyone," Djokovic said. Fritz stated: "My opinion that probably nobody cares about 80% of players are always dealing w something (severity levels differ) but everyone is honesty always a little banged up, the media is only ever focusing on the top guys so there issues get more attention," Fritz wrote.