Novak Djokovic played the best match of his Australian Open 2024 tournament, beating Tomas Martin Etcheverry for 6-3 6-3 7-6(2) in straight sets and qualifying for the 4th round of the tournament, where Adrian Mannarino will be waiting for him.
The Serbian champion celebrated match number 100 in Melbourne in the best way and, both in the on-court interview and in the press conference, he talked about numerous interesting topics. From the hateful match to his mind full of trash talking, and thanking his parents.
Furthermore, despite the success in three sets and the clear improvement, Djokovic does not believe he has already reached his best form in view of the final stages of the Australian Open.
"I didn't play my best tennis, but I played better than in the first two matches. This is a very good change. I'm starting to feel better physically and in terms of my game, but I still haven't played to the best of my ability," he told.
Djokovic often appeared disappointed with the level shown in the first rounds and did not hide his emotions on court. And during his on-court interview, Nole revealed how there is a lot of trash-talking inside his head about him.
I guess it's part of the game. It's part of who I am, but there's a lot of trash talk in my head. I have an extroverted personality. I show my emotions, not all the time, but it happens. When I show the negative side of my emotions, it's bad and it's not something I like. It is what it is.
I'm pretty sure everyone goes through their moments of crisis, particularly in games where they don' t feel their best and have some doubts. The question is how to overcome these doubts and focus on being in the present and trying to get the most out of yourself for the next point. We don't always talk about positive pep talks. I guess that's part of it about the game and who I am," told the 24 times Slam champion.
Djokovic touched the crowd talking about his childhood and his parents
Djokovic also thanked his parents for everything they did for him, sharing touching words. When asked where he finds the motivation to always set himself new goals, Nole shared a wonderful answer.
"I will try to be as brief as possible. Obviously I was lucky enough to undertake a very interesting journey. Coming from Serbia in the 90s was not easy for my family and for my parents. It was not easy to overcome so many economic adversities.
Not only to be able to live my dream, that of practicing an expensive motorcycle sport, which still is in our country. But at that time it was very expensive compared to other team sports, for example. I chose to play tennis and my parents did everything possible to put me in a position to train. As a child I didn't travel for a couple of years due to lack of resources, war, embargo and many other reasons.
At the end of the day, when I reflect on the whole journey that I've been on, what we've been through as a family, it's honestly been an incredible blessing to be here, and I'm grateful for that."
Talking about the match, this was the 100th match to give Novak Djokovic his 31st consecutive success at the Australian Open. Only Roger Federer (117) and Serena Williams (105) have played more matches than the Serbian champion in Melbourne. But Nole can celebrate this important milestone by qualifying for the round of 16 of the Happy Slam.
The Serbian certainly found the best performance of his tournament, at least from the point of view of concentration, and beat Tomas Martin Etcheverry with the score in straights sets. After a series of balanced games, Djokovic took measures and led the Argentine to the advantage in the fourth game. The break came a few minutes later due to the bad backhand attempted by Etcheverry. Djokovic didn't allow any service opportunities and deservedly earned the 1-0.
Even in the second set, the Serbian controlled the rallies without major worries and overtook the score at 1-1, hitting an excellent winning return with the forehand on the break point.
Djokovic continued well on serve and surprised his rival again at 5-3 with his perfect return. The 36-year-old didn't shine in the third set and Etcheverry took advantage. The Argentine has acquired greater solidity, but Djokovic gave him nothing in the tie-break that wrote the final word.