by Michael Rothschädl
last edit: Feb 18, 2021, 4:56 pm
The Russian, as a qualifier for the first time ever in a major, played completely surprisingly into the round of the best four – where Novak Djokovic was the biggest hurdle on the Australian Grand Slam floor.
The world number one gave up just nine games to secure a place in the final of the first Grand Slam of the year, as in the previous year. And that although his performances in the second week of the Australian Open 2021 were always under the shadow of an abdominal muscle injury that the 33-year-old sustained in round three against Taylor Fritz.
Now the Serb seems to be on the mend, as he said in the press conference after his semi-final success: “I think today was the day when I felt best on the pitch, both physically and mentally. I’m very much satisfied with this performance and even more if it comes at the right time, like before a Grand Slam final. I am also happy that I now have two days off, which will help my recovery a lot, “said the world number one who came last skipped the training sessions on the days off both before his eighth and semi-finals.
Djokovic with a white vest in Australian Open finals
In the final, Djokovic will now face Stefanos Tsitsipas or Daniil Medvedev. Two players the 33-year-old has the greatest respect for, as he said: “Regardless of who my opponent is on Sunday, I have to be ready if I want to win the title. Both Daniil and Stefanos are in great shape Form. Medvedev is playing at a very high level and has just had a winning streak of around 20 games. I think he’s the opponent to beat here. On the other hand, Tsitsipas played on a stratospheric level against Nadal. ”
He himself, so Djokovic, will adjust to his upcoming final opponent in an “easy” training session on Saturday. Because on Sunday, the industry leader will also want to maintain his sensational record of 8-0 in the Australian Open finals. A fact that gives the Serb a lot of self-confidence. How much of it he could buy in this final is somewhat unclear, as Djokovic emphasized: “Regardless of my big statistics here, I think that both Tsitsipas and Medvedev want to give everything to win their first Grand Slam title . I’ll have to be prepared for that. “
Don’t miss any news!
Activate the notifications: