Even if he took damage, Novak Djokovic had little difficulty eliminating Milos Raonic on Sunday morning at the Australian Open.
However, due to an abdominal injury, it was unclear if the Serbian player would be able to jump into the Rod Laver Arena for a duel. The world’s first racket found a way to beat Raonic in four runs (7-6 (4), 4-6, 6-1 and 6-4).
“I spent a lot of time at the table with my physiotherapist to be prepared for this match,” Djokovic said after the match. I have gone through extensive checks to see how severe my injury is, but I don’t want to talk about it.
“All I can say is that it is not perfect for me. The medical team told me it was an unexpected injury.”
Djokovic’s condition was very uncertain a few hours before the match began. He did not train on Saturday.
“If I wasn’t in the Grand Slam tournament, I wouldn’t play. It’s a Grand Slam. That means a lot to me at this point in my career.”
“The pain level was bearable with a heavy dose of painkillers, so I played. That was changing during the match and I found a way to win.”
In the quarter-finals, he will face Alexander Zverev. A duel may be painful for Djokovic.
For his part, Raonic did not address the media after leaving the field. He doesn’t know if it’s an hour late or a lack of interest on his part.
Djokovic already has the Ontario number. Yesterday, he beat him for the twelfth time in the most matches. Raonic had a golden opportunity to end this rarity as his opponent was dwarfed by injury. He missed it.
Once again, the 14th player in the world showed that his arsenal is limited. He was unable to threaten Djokovic in this duel. Raonic had to try to push his opponent into long back-to-field exchanges, but that didn’t happen.
Instead, let Djokovic dictate the pace of the match. This couldn’t be better under the circumstances.