Sunday, January 20, 2013

DJOKOVIC RIPS HIS SHIRT IN CELEBRATION AFTER DEFEATING WAWRINKA IN EPIC TIE AT AUSTRALIAN OPEN

                                 
The Serb is attempting to win his third consecutive Australian Open, which no man has managed before
An astonishing half-volleyed paddle at a sharp angle delivered the final blow making Top seed Novak Djokovic to barely get into the last eight of the Australian Open with a 1-6, 7-5, 6-4, 6-7, 12-10 victory against the No 15 seed Stanislas Wawrinka


Wawrinka had played like a raging bull for five hours and two minutes, cutting and thrusting with a brutal forehand and  elegant backhand. Still it was not enough to finish off a competitor whose spirit makes him stand alongside the greats of the game.

January isn't over, but already there is a contender for match of the year and, unquestionably, the match of the year’s first Grand Slam. The 25 year-old Serb is through to face Tomas Berdych and how much of a toll this has taken remains to be seen.

Last year he managed to rebound from a match of four hours, 50 minutes against Andy Murray in the last four to overcome Rafael Nadal and win the final in five hours, 53 minutes. So there is no reason for the 27-year-old Czech powerhouse to think that some of the work has been done for him.
 Djokovic celebrated in his usual manner, ripping his shirt off after taking the fifth set 12-10
                            
Murray’s effort in the US Open final, when he emphatically put Djokovic away in the fifth set and caused him to severely cramp, was left looking all the more impressive by the Serb’s typical refusal to submit and the way his body held up.

Wawrinka, Switzerland’s eternal bridesmaid to Roger Federer, did everything but win this match and again showed that he is capable of causing extreme discomfort to the very best players if they are slightly below their top level.

Djokovic felt that his experience of these situations was the difference. ‘In the end these kind of matches help your confidence, they are what you live for and practise for,’ he said.

‘I had a flashback of the 2012 finals. I feel sorry that one of us had to lose, but I am just thrilled that I was able to fight up until the last moment.’

That Wawrinka cannot quite deliver the knockout punch explains why he has spent much of his career just  outside the top 10. ‘It was the best match I have ever played and the worst I’ve ever felt afterwards,’ he said. ‘I fought like a dog.’ 

Djokovic, who will meet Tomas Berdych in the quarter-finals, has now won 18 successive matches at Melbourne Park, a run that includes the near-six-hour final victory over Rafael Nadal in 2012.

2 comments:

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