Casper Ruud - Miami Open 2024 and Novak Djokovic - Roland Garros 2024

Casper Ruud ‘doesn’t expect’ Novak Djokovic ‘to surrender’ ahead of their Roland Garros Quarter-final

Casper Ruud has set up a rematch of the 2023 Roland Garros final, and the Norwegian has had his say on Novak Djokovic’s potential knee injury. 

Ruud beat American No.1 Taylor Fritz, 7-6(6) 3-6 6-4 6-2, to reach his third consecutive Roland Garros quarter-final last night in Paris.

However, the main topic of conversation in Ruud’s post-match press conference surrounded his next opponent.

Djokovic was forced to come through a second consecutive five set match, with his last two matches totalling over nine hours on court.

In the most recent victory over Francisco Cerundolo, Djokovic appeared to hurt his knee and has admitted that he doesn’t know whether he will be able to take to the court against Ruud.

The world No.1 is set to undergo an MRI scan today to review the knee today, but Ruud appears to be fully expecting for the match to go ahead.

“I don’t expect him to surrender at all,” claimed Ruud. “I have to expect him to be fresh, ready and that it’s going to be a tough match.

“Last year in the final, I got an early break in the first set, I still remember. I lost it on the tiebreak. It was a long, tough, physical set. I’m going to try to learn from that.”

In the Roland Garros final last year, Djokovic beat Ruud in straight sets to claim his third title at the tournament.

Although, Ruud has the most recent victory in their head-to-head after beating Djokovic at the Monte Carlo Masters in April.

And Ruud is wanting the match to go ahead, despite only winning one match against the Serbian in their six previous meetings.

“It’s his body and obviously his choice. He will do whatever is right for him. Yeah, I mean if he steps on court on Wednesday it doesn’t change anything,” explained Ruud. “It’s still a match to be played. He’s going to do his best to be ready, I’m sure. I’m going to do my best to be ready.”

The three-time Grand Slam finalist continued, “Obviously playing best-of-five sets is demanding for everyone. Like we’ve been talking about, he’s played nine hours the last two matches, so obviously it’s normal that some players will feel it a little extra.

“So hopefully he will be able to step on court. I think in the Slams, in the quarter-final, it’s a shame if there is no match, of course. I guess wait and see, but I will prepare like any other match and do my best to be ready myself.”

If their match does go ahead, Ruud and Djokovic will play their quarter-final tomorrow at Roland Garros.

Inside the baseline…

It is nice to see Casper Ruud really welcoming the challenge of Novak Djokovic, with the Norwegian previously being accused of giving some of the top players too much respect on court. After their battle at the Monte Carlo Masters, there is real intrigue surrounding this match, so hopefully Djokovic’s MRI scan results come back positive. Regardless of whether his knee is feeling better, Djokovic will no doubt be feeling fatigued after his lengthy last two matches and that is something that Ruud has to take advantage of.

READ MORE: Novak Djokovic ‘doesn’t know’ if he can play his Roland Garros Quarter-Final

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.