Novak Djokovic - Australian Open 2024

Novak Djokovic ‘limped out of’ the Australian Open claims former No.1

Novak Djokovic was beaten in the Australian Open semi-final for the first time in his career last week, and former No.1 Andy Roddick has admitted he is ‘a little concerned’ about the manor of the defeat.

Djokovic had reached 10 previous semi-finals at the Melbourne major, going onto win the title on all of those occasions, but eventual champion Jannik Sinner brought an end to that streak this year.

Sinner beat the Serbian, 6-1 6-2 6(6)-7 6-3, and Roddick has detailed Djokovic’s loss on his podcast with Jon Wertheim, “He kind of limped out of this tournament [Australian Open] a little bit, you know, through no fault of his own, the guy’s been better than anyone on Earth, and it’s gonna happen.

“But I’m a little concerned that one, he’s not getting younger when it turns, it turns quickly also, he has guys that can punch him in the mouth, you know, he has this new generation that once they know they can beat him, they’re not going to revert to the, you know, the mentality that there’s no way to beat him.”

Following Djokovic’s loss to Jannik Sinner at the Australian Open and his Wimbledon final defeat to Carlos Alcaraz, Werthiem asked Roddick about whether he thought this was the beginning of the world No.1 losing his stranglehold on the Grand Slam tournaments.

“Well, I think it’s going to be about the mental gymnastics and how those play out,” said Roddick. “Like I for 10 years haven’t been concerned about Novak playing Indian Wells or Miami or whichever hardcourt event he’s gonna play next.”

The 2003 US Open champion continued, “Like, it’s just not as important as the Slams and he’s been able to show up to the Slams and play well and get results. I’m very interested to see how he comes out of the gates in an Indian Wells or a Miami and kind of the pressure and the defeat on a massive level.”

It is currently unclear as to when Djokovic’s next tournament will be, as he potentially looks ahead to returning at the sunshine double of Indian Wells and Miami for the first time since 2019.

Inside the baseline…

It was a very uncharacteristic defeat from Novak Djokovic last week, as is any loss of his is, but it seemed that illness was bothering him from the very first round in Melbourne. That being said, Jannik Sinner thoroughly deserved the victory and backed it up in the final against Daniil Medvedev, as the Italian continues to close the gap on the top three ranked players. It would be very surprising if Djokovic never won a Grand Slam title again, and he will be extra hungry when Roland Garros comes around this year.

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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.