Australian Open: Jannik Sinner dethrones Novak Djokovic

Jannik Sinner will compete in his first Major final in Melbourne

by Jovica Ilic
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Australian Open: Jannik Sinner dethrones Novak Djokovic
© Cameron Spencer / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Jannik Sinner will chase his first Major title at the Australian Open! The 22-year-old Italian dethroned Novak Djokovic 6-1, 6-2, 6-7, 6-3 at Rod Laver Arena, entering his first Major final. Sinner will fight for a Major crown against Daniil Medvedev or Alexander Zverev.

Djokovic made a terrible start, losing the opening two sets in no time, powerless against Sinner's deep and consisten strokes. The Serb recovered a bit in the third set, fending off a match point in the tie break and extending the battle.

However, Jannik made a fresh start in the fourth set and toppled world no. 1 for a place in the title clash. Thus, Novak lost his first Australian Open match since 2018, ending his incredible streak after 33 consecutive wins in Melbourne.

Jannik produced one of his finest performances and outplayed the Australian Open king. The Italian never faced a break point, allowing only a couple of deuces in his games and keeping the pressure on the other side. Novak could not follow that pace, spraying over 50 unforced errors and suffering five breaks, enough to propel the rival through.

Sinner built a massive advantage in the shortest rallies up to four strokes, firing many service winners and taming his strokes nicely in a career-best victory. Jannik made a flying start, dropping six points behind the initial shot in the opener and producing four fine holds.

Novak was miles away from that pace, serving at 43% and dropping almost half of the points in his games. The Serb sprayed 15 unforced errors and dropped serve two times to find himself 6-1 down and in a challenging position.

Sinner forced Djokovic's mistake in the encounter's first game for a hold at 15. Defending nicely, the younger player caused the veteran's mistake in the second game and created a break chance. Jannik went for his shots and landed a forehand drive-volley winner for a break and an early boost.

The 4th seed fired a service winner in the third game, holding at 15 and moving 3-0 in front after 12 minutes.

Novak Djokovic, Australian Open 2024© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Looking flat and struggling to find his strokes, Novak placed a forehand wide in the fourth game and offered Jannik another break chance in game four.

The defending champion saved it with a forehand winner and held with a forced error to get his name on the scoreboard. Jannik left that chance behind and held with a powerful serve in game five, opening a 4-1 gap. Djokovic missed a routine volley at the net in the sixth game, facing another break point.

The Serb placed a backhand long, losing serve for the second time and propelling the Italian 5-1 in front. Sinner wrapped up the opener with a hold at 30 in game seven, playing well and building the advantage after 35 minutes.

Jannik Sinner dethroned Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open.

Novak raised his first serve percentage to 75% in the second set, but it gave no result, with Jannik outplaying him again. The Italian dropped four points behind the initial shot and converted ten return points into two breaks of serve, forging a massive lead and moving closer to the finish line.

Djokovic held at love in the first game, and Sinner responded with a hold at 15 for 1-1 thanks to an unreturned serve. The Italian landed a forehand winner for 30-15 in the third game and earned two break points after the Serb's wayward backhand.

The defending champion placed another backhand wide, losing serve and falling further behind with 48 minutes on the clock. The 4th seed produced a hold at love in game four, firing a service winner and cementing the advantage.

Djokovic reduced the deficit to 3-2 with a hold at 15 but could not do much on the return, as Sinner landed another powerful serve in the next one for a 6-1, 4-2 lead after an hour. Jannik extended the sixth game with a forehand drive-volley winner and created a break chance, denied by Novak's forehand winner.

However, the Italian earned the second break chance after the Serb's loose lob and seized it after world no. 1's massive forehand error for a double break lead. Djokovic saved the first set point in game eight with a fine attack before Sinner grabbed the second with a forced mistake, wrapping up two impressive sets and forging a 6-1, 6-2 advantage after an hour and 13 minutes.

Jannik Sinner, Australian Open 2024© Cameron Spencer / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Jannik painted a winner at the net in the third set's opening game and created a break chance that could have taken him closer to the finish line.

Novak saved it after controlling the rally with his forehand and held with a drop shot winner for at least some confidence. Jannik left that chance behind and produced a hold at love in game two with a service winner, looking mighty impressive behind the initial shot.

The Serb closed the third game with a rare service winner, opening a 2-1 advantage and moving 30-0 up on the return in the next one. The Italian stayed composed and grabbed four straight points for a hold and 2-2. The defending champion painted an ace down the T line in the fifth game, holding at 15 and looking better than in sets one and two.

Serving better and better, Sinner secured a hold at love in game six with an unreturned serve, locking the result at 3-3. Novak delivered another fine hold, firing an ace and opening a 4-3 lead. However, his return could not cause any damage, with Jannik clinching the eighth game after Novak's routine forehand mistake.

The defending champion closed the ninth game at love with a service winner, sending the pressure to the other side. Sinner felt none of it, landing a service winner and locking the result at 5-5 with a hold at 15. Someone in the crowd got sick in the 11th game, interrupting the duel for a couple of minutes.

Novak Djokovic, Australian Open 2024© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Djokovic stayed focused and held for a 6-5 lead, forcing Sinner to serve to stay in the set for the second time. Jannik fired a smash winner, holding at 15 and introducing a tie break.

Novak led 2-0 and moved 3-2 in front with a forehand winner. Jannik netted a forehand in the sixth point, sending his rival 4-2 in front. Djokovic sprayed a backhand error in the eighth point, bringing Sinner back to 4-4. The Italian fired a forehand winner for 5-4 before the Serb pulled the mini-break back with a lob winner, climbing back to 5-5.

Jannik created a match point with a service winner, and Novak denied it after the rival's forehand mistake, adding more drama. Djokovic forced Sinner's mistake for 7-6 and a set point. Novak drew Jannik's mistake and clinched the breaker 8-6, reducing the overall gap at two sets to one after two and a half hours.

Jannik made a fresh start in the fourth set and fired an ace down the T line for a hold at 15. Novak sprayed a forehand error in the second game and experienced three break points. Djokovic denied the first with a forced error and denied the following two with service winners, getting out of jail and drawing Sinner's backhand mistake for a vital hold.

The Italian closed the third game with a forehand drive-volley winner and pushed strong on the return in the next one from 40-0 down.

Jannik Sinner, Australian Open 2024© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Novak squandered a massive advantage and offered Jannik a break point after a costly double fault.

The defending champion placed a backhand beyond the baseline, losing serve and falling 3-1 behind. The fifth game saw deuces on Sinner's serve only for the second time in the match. Jannik landed a volley winner at the net after the second and held with a service winner for a massive 4-1 lead.

Novak reduced the deficit with a hold at 15 in game six after a backhand winner, hoping for the return chances in the upcoming games. Instead, the Italian held at love in game seven with a nice attack, forging a 5-2 advantage and forcing the Serb to stay in the match.

Djokovic held at love in game eight, reducing the deficit to 5-3 and having one more chance to prolong the battle. Sinner served for his first Major final in game nine and found himself 30-15 behind after a double fault. Jannik responded with an ace and created a match point with a service winner. Sinner seized it, sealing the deal in style and moving into the final.

Australian Open Jannik Sinner Novak Djokovic
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