Following two failures at the US Open and Roland Garros a year ago, Novak Djokovic restored the order at the Australian Open a couple of weeks ago, claiming his 18th Major crown to increase the GOAT race. Novak defeated Daniil Medvedev in straight sets to extend his Melbourne Park winning streak and add another Major to his tally after leaving the previous two to Dominic Thiem and Rafael Nadal.
Speaking about Novak's campaign, his coach Goran Ivanisevic said it was an extremely important crown for the Serb, especially after the previous two Majors when things didn't work his way. In New York, Djokovic got defaulted for the first time in a career against Pablo Carreno Busta in the fourth round.
The three-time champion had the opening set in his hands, serving well and creating four break chances at 4-3 and 5-4. Pablo fended off three set points in game ten, gathered momentum and stole Novak's serve in game 11 to move 6-5 in front.
Angry at himself, Novak accidentally slammed the ball into the lineswoman, knocked her on the floor and left the tournament after a couple of minutes spent in conversation with the officials.
Goran Ivanisevic spoke about Novak Djokovic's US Open default.
"I think everybody saw that it was a tough period for Novak.
The New York exit came as a shocking one; no one could have expected that, especially when he was on a trail for another Major title. Novak won the title in Rome, but he wasn't at his best. I don't even want to mention the Roland Garros final, as he didn't show up in that one.
The good thing is, Novak can't play worse than that, even if he tries. Rafa would still be the favorite in Paris, but the favorite can't win it every time. Also, Novak has to be at 100% physically and feel that he can stay on the court as long as necessary.
In that Roland Garros final against Rafa, Novak wasn't ready to spend 15 hours on the court and do his best to beat Nadal. That's why he went for drop shots and picked some wrong solutions. Against Medvedev in Melbourne, it was clear that Novak was prepared to stay on the court and fight for 30 hours if necessary; that's what he needs against Rafa in Paris. When he feels he is physically at 100%, his game usually follows that pattern," says Goran Ivanisevic.