Novak Djokovic makes big Wimbledon statement in Holger Rune win | Tennis | Sport


Novak Djokovic signalled that he is a serious content for the Wimbledon title and buried any injury doubts as he convincingly beat No.15 seed Holger Rune 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 on Monday evening.

Djokovic had a rocky first week at the All England Club after undergoing knee surgery on a torn meniscus in his right knee.

Sporting a grey knee support, the Serb dropped a set against Jacob Fearnley and Alexei Popyrin in the second and third round.

But he was a different beast when he stepped onto Centre Court to face his first seeded opponent of The Championships.

The 24-time Grand Slam champion raced into a 3-0 lead, breaking Rune at the first attempt, to wrap up the first set in under half an hour.

There was a slight worry midway through the second set when on serve and trailing 3-2.

Djokovic looked uncomfortable while grabbing his stomach and requested a toilet break – but he was blocked from leaving the court by the umpire.

It wasn’t until the following changeover that the world No.2 raced to the bathroom and back.

His stomach didn’t appear to trouble him thereafter – but the rowdy crowd did.

Always cheering for the underdog, the fans inside Centre Court attempted to get behind the Norwegian star with chants of „Ruuuune“, which Djokovic mistook for boos.

At one point the 37-year-old chucked his arms out wide as if to ask why they were booing him.

As we have learnt in the past, particularly the 2019 Wimbledon final against Roger Federer, boos only make Djokovic’s powers stronger.

And he rallied to take the second, despite saving a late break point.

Djokovic started the third set as he did the first, breaking in Rune’s first service game and from there he had one foot in the quarter-finals.

And the other foot is still in the air behind his baseline.

There was a huge gasp inside Centre Court when Djokovic slipped twice in the same spot when push to defend deep. He never looked comfortable running across that patch of slippery grass in the left-hand corner in the following points.

But he didn’t need to. Djokovic held serve for a 4-2 lead in the third and broke in the following game before serving for the match.

Djokovic takes on Australian Alex De Minaur in the quarter-finals on NoWednesday.



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