Novak Djokovic won all seven matches in 2023. The Serb is through to the third round of the Australian Open, but his next opponent is not his only concern. Novak has been struggling with a hamstring injury since Adelaide, and it seems to be getting worse.
Djokovic felt the pain during the Australian Open second round clash against Enzo Couacaud and said things are in the hands of God and his physio. Novak will face Grigor Dimitrov on Saturday, doing everything he can to recover and play at 100%.
Djokovic felt better in the first round against Roberto Carballes Baena, although he had a bagel in both games. The Serb defeated Couacaud 6-1, 6-7, 6-2, 6-0 in three hours and four minutes to extend his winning streak in Australia.
Novak struggled with an injury in the second set and required treatment in the closing stages. Couacaud fended off three break points and came from behind in the tiebreaker to steal the set and level the overall score. Djokovic shifted into a higher gear in sets three and four and dropped just two games to progress to the next round.
Novak dominated with her first serve and faced one break point throughout the match. He stole 46% of the return points and converted them on 7 breaks of 21 chances. Enzo injured his right ankle in the fourth game of the first match while trying to reach for a ball in the net.
He received a medical timeout and struggled through the remainder of the set. Novak capitalized on her second break in game six to move 5-1 in front and closed out the set with a service winner in the next.
Novak Djokovic has struggled with a hamstring injury since Adelaide.
The Frenchman felt better in the second set and produced a couple of comfortable holds to keep in touch.
Novak missed a break chance in game seven after Enzo’s ace and began to feel his left leg over the next few games. The Serb required treatment and squandered two more break chances in game 11 to keep the opposition on the bright side.
Couacaud survived all the obstacles and came back from 3-0 in the tie break. Novak double-faulted at 5-5 and hit a long backhand at the next to deliver a set to his opponent and raise doubts. Djokovic made a fresh start in the third set and made one good hold after another.
He broke Couacaud in the second game and converted second set point at 5-2 to move closer to the finish line. Novak broke in the second game of the fourth set to build the lead and dodged the only break chance in the next for a 3-0 lead.
Enzo made a backhand error in the fourth game to lose serve again and push to world no. 5 closer to the goal. Novak hit a game-winner in the sixth game for two match points and hit a backhand down the line winner in the first to emerge on top and avoid spending any more time on the court.
«To be honest, it’s not good at all. I felt better in my previous match than tonight, that’s all I can say now. It’s up to God and the physio to help me. I have to take it day by day. I hope I recover and prepare for a tough match against Grigor in the next round», said Novak Djokovic.