Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain ‘unpredictable’ Australian Open issue | Tennis | Sport

0
14
Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain


Australian Open: Novak Djokovic discusses injury issues

Novak Djokovic refused to go into detail about the nature of his injury after he played through the pain of an abdominal issue to beat Milos Raonic and reach the quarter-finals of the Australian Open. Djokovic could be seen wearing bandaging to his side but did not want to go into detail about his issue despite two days earlier describing it as a muscle tear.

The world No 1’s self-diagnosis after his third-round win over Taylor Fritz saw Djokovic tipped to quit the Australian Open before facing Raonic.

He skipped practice on Saturday and underwent MRI scans but despite that, he stepped out on to centre court against his Canadian opponent and won 7-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 to advance to the last eight where he will face Alexander Zverev on Tuesday.

Details are scarce about the exact nature of the Serbian’s problem and speaking after defeating Raonic, Djokovic preferred to keep the exact details private.

Asked whether he has suffered a muscle tear or just a strain, and whether the problem is in his abs, Djokovic said: “I understand that you want to know, but I really don’t want to get into it what it is. Yes, I did an MRI, I did everything, I know what it is, but I don’t want to talk about it now.

“I’m still in the tournament. I hope you guys understand that. I don’t want to speculate too much about it. It’s not ideal for me. I mean, I definitely have felt better, you know, before my third-round match against Fritz than I have starting from third set with Fritz when that happened and all the match today.

“I didn’t know few hours before I stepped on the court tonight whether I’m gonna play or not. I didn’t hit a tennis ball yesterday. As I said, I tried to use every single hour possibly to recover and give myself at least a little bit of chance to step on the court, which I have done.

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain ‘unpredictable’ Australian Open issue (Image: GETTY)

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain 'unpredictable' Australian Open issue

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain ‘unpredictable’ Australian Open issue (Image: GETTY)

“As I said on the court, if I’m part of any other tournament other than Grand Slam, I definitely wouldn’t be playing. But it’s a Grand Slam. It matters a lot to me at this stage of my career, of course. I want to do everything possible in this very short amount of time to get on the court.

“Playing best-of-five, you know, with kind of an aggressive mover that I am on the court doesn’t help much with this kind of injury, but I think the combination of pills and medicaments and treatments and also some willpower and of course certain degree and level of bearing the pain.

“Mentally I think you have to kind of accept that I did come into the match knowing that I’ll probably feel pain all the way through, which was the case.

“But it was the level of the pain was bearable, so I could actually play. And it was kind of going on and off a little bit during the match. Certain stage of the match it was more; certain stages less.

“But I somehow managed to find a way and win, and that’s what matters the most. Now I’ve got another 40 hours or something like that till the next match, which is great about Grand Slams.

“You get that day, day and a half in between to really rest. So, you know, most likely I won’t be training tomorrow and just, again, going back to recovery routine and hoping that things will get better.”

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain 'unpredictable' Australian Open issue

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain ‘unpredictable’ Australian Open issue (Image: GETTY)

Djokovic admitted he has been told by his medical team that he is taking a “gamble” by playing through the problem rather than withdrawing from the tournament to rest up.

He continued: “It’s really unpredictable, you can’t know what’s going to happen with you once you’re on the court. You’re not gonna save yourself or think about going for that point or this shot or that shot.

“It just pulls you. It’s normal. Playing at this level, you just want to give it all. It could cause much more damage than it is at the moment, but it also could go in a good direction. So that’s something that I don’t know, and I don’t think I will also know until I stop taking painkillers.

“As long as I’m with high dose of painkillers, I guess, you know, still can bear some of the pain. But the tricky thing with the painkillers is that they kind of hide what’s really happening in there, so you might not feel it, but then the big damage might be done.

“But again, I’m fine with whatever is happening post-tournament, because I’m going to take time off to heal properly before I step on the court again. It was worse against Fritz in third, fourth, and fifth set than it was today the entire match [against Raonic].

DON’T MISS…
Novak Djokovic message sent to Cameron Norrie after Rafael Nadal loss
Thiem honest on Australian Open exit as Djokovic and Nadal get boost
Rafael Nadal reacts to Novak Djokovic injury at Australian Open

“So that’s a positive obviously for me. I can’t really say what percentage, was it worse or better, I don’t really know, but I was not saving myself too much, if you know what I mean, on the court.

“There were some shots here and there when it was really an extreme ball then maybe I let it go. I don’t know. Few times. But I was in it. I was in the match. I was just trying to use my serve accurately and try to go through my service games with as less of an effort as possible.

WATCH THE AUSTRALIAN OPEN LIVE ON EUROSPORT AND EUROSPORT APP

“It’s such a quick surface. I mean, it’s the quickest court that I have ever experienced here in Australia ever since I have been coming here, you know, more than 15 years.

“You play somebody like Milos or my next opponent, Zverev, one of the best servers in the world and huge serves, you just have to kind of pray that you are reading their serve in the important moment and kind of get the break.

“I don’t know whether it was good for me or not that we didn’t have too many rallies and exchanges. It probably was, I guess, suitable to my condition at this point, even though against Fritz what bothered me the most is that quick reaction and return and changing direction.

“But, you know, some reason that today it was quite okay.”

Asked where exactly the problem is, Djokovic smiled: “Well, I mean, probably people have seen it. I mean, I have the tape on my abdominal muscle. I guess that’s where it is.

“We are in a rotational sport, so it affects everything. It’s affects every single shot. It affects every time I make a split step and turn or every time I extend and try to reach for the serve or whatever it is, you know.

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain 'unpredictable' Australian Open issue

Novak Djokovic injury: World No 1 refuses to explain ‘unpredictable’ Australian Open issue (Image: GETTY)

“Every extreme ball sliding, because that’s what I do, and every time I would slide today for some, you know, far reaches, I would feel it a lot. Yeah, so that’s what it is.”

Former women’s world No 1 Victoria Azarenka, a two-time Australian Open winner, has previously said journalists shouldn’t ask questions relating to the health condition of tennis players, declaring the details private.

Djokovic said: “Well, yeah, I would agree with her. I mean, I understand that obviously media wants to speculate, they want to know, they want to understand what’s going on.

“They want to convey that, communicate that to people, tennis fans, everybody who is following, because it creates a buzz, it creates a story, you know, uncertainty, as well, whether the player is going to play or not, what’s happening.

“Yeah, so I understand both sides. But I would agree with Vika, for sure. I don’t feel comfortable, I mean, comfortable to talk about. I mean, I would let medical representatives talk about that obviously in detail if there is a need for that.

“So from my side, I’m gonna tell you how I feel, but I’m not going to go into the medical conditions that I’m experiencing.”





Source link

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here