The Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic took his well-deserved trophy with him for a walk at Melbourne's Brighton Beach on Monday. Djokovic celebrated the ninth Australian Open crown on Sunday, overcoming an injury and all the rivals to lift his 18th Major title and move closer to Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the GOAT race.
In the final, Djokovic took down Daniil Medvedev 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 in an hour and 53 minutes, playing well on both serve and return to control the scoreboard and leave the youngster far behind in sets two and three. Novak had spent three and a half hours under a boiling Melbourne sun in round two against Frances Tiafoe before experiencing an abdominal injury against another young American Taylor Fritz in the third round.
Novak Djokovic spoke about all the judges and critics from the Australian Open.
Winning the opening two sets, Novak slid over the Melbourne-sign paint at the beginning of the third set and injured his stomach muscle, playing with a lot of pain and losing sets three and four before bouncing back in the decider to escape and remain in contention.
Unsure whether he would play the next match against Milos Raonic, Novak couldn't practice after that victory over Fritz, raising doubts over his campaign and drawing media attention. Not at his best, Djokovic defeated Raonic in four sets, playing on a high level in sets three and four and gathering many comments about the nature of his injury.
Unhappy with the treatment, Novak refused to speak about his injury from that moment, doing his best to recover and beating Alexander Zverev, Aslan Karatsev and Daniil Medvedev to extend his Melbourne reign. "It's bigger than what it was when it happened when I did the first MRI after the third round.
It's not too bad, judging by what the doctors said, but I will have to take some time off to heal. The tear is bigger. It's 2,5 cm, and it started at 1,7 cm. They will always question anything I say or anything I do, and that's fine; I just accept the fact that I can't please everyone.
Does it frustrate me? Of course. I have feelings like anybody else. I don't enjoy it when someone judges or criticizes me. At the same time, I accept the fact that everyone is entitled to their opinion," Novak Djokovic said.