Thứ Ba, 15 tháng 11, 2016

Tim Henman claims Novak Djokovic showed “where he is at mentally” with post-match outburst

Novak Djokovic celebrates winning his round robin match

The Serb lost his cool following questions over his conduct after he hit the ball into the crowd during his victory over Dominic Thiem at the O2.

Tim Henman claimed Novak Djokovic showed “where he is at mentally” with his angry outbursts at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
The world No.2 hit a ball into the crowd in frustration after losing the first set of his opening match – and then petulantly responded to questioning in his press conference.
Former British No.1 Henman was famously disqualified from Wimbledon in 1995 for hitting a ballgirl with a ball in a fit of rage during a doubles match.
And the BBC analyst claimed Djokovic’s mistake wasn’t to lose his temper in the heat of battle – it was his tetchy post-match reaction.
“If it had hit someone then he would be have been disqualified,” Henman said.
“If he had just said, ‘You know, it was a mistake, I shouldn’t have done it. I was lucky I got away with it but it won’t happen again’, the story has gone.
“It is very surprising for a man of his experience but it does emphasis where he is mentally at the moment.”
Djokovic held all four Grand Slam titles after his defeat of Andy Murray at the French Open and led the Scot by more than 8,000 points at the top of the rankings.
Tim Henman during his semi-final match with Pete Sampras
But after a turbulent few months, his 122-week reign as world No.1 ended in Paris and now he needs to better Murray’s result at The O2 to end the year as the top-ranked player.
Murray’s former coach Miles Maclagan said: “He (Djokovic) has been frustrated in the second half of the season. He hasn’t quite been himself. I was shocked with what I saw.
“He’s definitely not himself.”
Novak Djokovic serves
Novak Djokovic shakes hands with Dominic Thiem after defeating him in their round robin match
Djokovic was more like his old self after losing his first ever set to Dominic Thiem and lost only two more games in the match.
He will next face Kei Nishikori on Tuesday after the world No.5 beat US Open champion Stan Wawrinka 6-2 6-3 in only 67 minutes.
And the Swiss said: “Coming into the tournament, Novak wasn’t playing that good. But, again, it’s the World Tour Final. It’s a group qualification to make the semi-final. Novak won the first yesterday. Everything starts from zero.
“It was already an interesting match yesterday, watching Novak playing, winning, finding a better game than I think he played in the last few months.”

More games: friv

Thứ Ba, 27 tháng 9, 2016

Djokovic vs. Leitch: My Tennis Match With Novak

Novak Djokovic is currently ranked the No. 1 men’s singles tennis player in the world. I last played tennis when I was 12. Yet somehow, shortly after midnight last Thursday, I found myself staring down the barrel of the Djokovic serve on a court in one of Milan’s largest sports arenas.
“Are you ready?” he called, before throwing, flexing, and then smashing the ball in one sinuous movement that, had I not been at its receiving end, I would have relished witnessing as a symphony of human physical grace.
My reply? Not so much. I didn’t see the ball, just a vague green laser beam, but I sure felt the wind of it passing. And as I crouched at the baseline and prepared to answer a second serve, I issued silent thanks that at least I’d already had children.
“How did this happen?” incredulous friends have been asking me ever since. It started last Wednesday as I trooped into the Gucci show, following the opening lunch for Milan Fashion Week in the presence of Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. I was shooting the breeze with Vogue Runway Director Nicole Phelps, discussing the U.S. election, the future of fashion, and the end of Brangelina—all the big stuff. As we rounded the last banquette by our block, I noticed that VogueEditor in Chief Anna Wintour was beckoning me over for a word.
“Luke,” she said, “do you play tennis?”
“No,” I replied firmly. “But I’m pretty good at ping-pong.”
Anna: “Would you like to play tennis?”
Me: “Umm, okay sure?!”
“Great,” she said, gesturing slightly to her right. “Would you like to play tennis with Serena Williams?”
My eyes flicked to the right, and there, wearing a Gucci bomber and a terrifying grin, was Serena Williams. I felt my spirit leave my body a little.
“Great,” said Anna. “Then it’s all set. I bid for a game with Serena, but I can’t make it. So I’d like you to go along in my place and write an article. I think it’s set for 8:30 p.m.”
I stumbled back to my seat. It was well after the Fausto Puglisi show, and only 90 minutes before we were supposed to play, that it dawned on me that I didn’t have the address. Finally I got the address and, with my shorts and trusty Arsenal T-shirt in my bag, headed to the venue, a place called Mediolanum Forum. “Wow,” offered’s cameraman, Nico. “That’s quite a big stadium. The Rolling Stones play there.” That seemed a little strange. Then I got a WhatsApp message from a friend: “Did you know Serena is playing in a celebrity tournament live on Sky TV tonight?” A quick check revealed a horrible truth. Serena was playing as part of a two-day exhibition match series for the Novak Djokovic Foundation. Anna had won a celebrity auction to play her there—and I was her patsy.
“Anna,” I emailed. “I have just discovered it is a celebrity tournament with thousands in the audience. I am going for it—but argh!”
“Oops,” she replied. “Forgot to mention. Wanted to make sure you would go.”
And that is how I ended up sitting two hours courtside watching Serena Williams fire off 180 km/h serves in front of a roaring crowd and wondering what the hell was going on. What would all these Italian tennis fans make of a junior fashion editor failing to return a shot?
In the end, the fortunes wheeled my way. The actual “celebrity” bit of the tournament ran over. The cameras shut down. The crowd left. My heart stilled. Williams’s agent, Jill, explained that, as she’d been playing for more than three hours, Williams needed to shower and get some sleep. We could play another day.
Which is when Novak Djokovic sauntered on court and offered to take Serena’s place. I would have loved to have played her—although not live on Italian television—but playing him was an equal privilege. We had a fascinating conversation about the balance between calmness and focus, “The Zone,” which he tries to achieve while playing. He even gave me a serving lesson. And what you won’t see in the accompanying video is that I returned a Djokovic serve.
Okay, my return was out by a whisker. But it went over the net! Which, when life chucks you a curveball as crazy as this one, is the best you can hope for.

Thứ Ba, 30 tháng 8, 2016

Novak Djokovic plays down US Open injury concerns after laboured victory over Jerzy Janowicz

Novak Djokovic takes a break during his victory over Jerzy Janowicz.
In a moment of theatricality you would never see at Wimbledon, Phil Collins opened the first evening session on Arthur Ashe Stadium with two of his best-known songs. After that, the only thing “In The Air Tonight” was a sense of vulnerability about tournament favourite Novak Djokovic.
Djokovic has been plagued by physical pains and “private issues” in the months since his personal epiphany at the French Open, and in last night’s opener against Jerzy Janowicz he showed his hand early by calling the trainer at the second changeover.
A medical time-out ensued, in which the surprising thing was that Djokovic requested treatment on his right elbow rather than the sore left wrist which he had identified as the reason for his absence from Cincinnati a fortnight ago.
Novak Djokovic celebrates after his victory over Jerzy Janowicz at the US Open. 
Novak Djokovic celebrates after his victory over Jerzy Janowicz at the US Open.
Whatever the problem was, it didn’t seem to prevent Djokovic from serving accurately – the key skill that carried him to a 6-3, 5-7, 6-2, 6-1 victory in 2hr 37min. But his all-round game was well short of its usual rhythm and self-assurance, and he dropped the second set via a slew of uncharacteristic errors.
Janowicz is not the most dangerous of opponents at the moment, judging by his world ranking of No. 247 and a record that shows his last ATP-level victory to have come in October. But he still rattled Djokovic with his unpredictable play, which featured numerous drop-shots as well as plenty of all-or-nothing wallops.
Janowicz’s ball-striking was never going to be consistent enough to score a win here, barring a total collapse from his opponent. But Jiri Vesely, the left-handed Czech who beat him in Monte Carlo in April, could prove a more challenging opponent for Djokovic in the second round.
Asked by the on-court interviewer about his medical time-out, Djokovic started by making a joke of the issue. “It was hard to put up a show after Phil Collins,” he replied, “but you know he’s a legend.” He then broke into a verse of “I Can’t Dance” from Genesis’s back catalogue, before finally engaging with the question when it was put to him a second time.
“It’s never easy to play at this level throughout the year,” said Djokovic. “There are periods when you are not feeling 100 per cent but I don’t think it’s necessary to talk about this now. I just take it day by day, and let’s keep on going.
“It was overall a good performance, particularly in the third and fourth sets, even if the first couple of sets were a bit up and down. Jerzy has an unpredictable serve. When the ball is going that speed you just react and pray that you can get it back.”

Thứ Ba, 19 tháng 7, 2016

Novak Djokovic to turn the switch for the hardcourt season

The Serb, 29, cut his ties with tennis for a while following his early-exit at Wimbledon.

During the first half of 2016 season, all the highlights regarding tennis achievements were mostly related toNovak Djokovic. His consistency over the various tournaments whether it was hardcourt (Doha, Australian Open, Indian Wells, Miami), or clay (Monte-Carlo, Madrid, Rome, Roland Garros) brought him lots of trophies and also worldwide recognition. Then, it followed Wimbledon Championships, a syncope that few saw it coming. Still the Serb remains the leader of the ATP ranking in both rankings ( ATP Tour and ATP Race). One thing needs clearing: Djokovic played only big tournaments, namely Masters 1000 and Grand Slam with one sole exception- Doha.

Rio Olympics detour.

There are many players who chose not to play in Rio due to the inappropriate date.The Olympics cuts the American hardcourt season right in two. The organisers tried to please the vast majority by choosing also a hardcourt surface to play on. On top of this Zyka virus remains a major concern. The other days, top players like Milos Raonic or Tomas Berdych officially announced that they`ll not compete in Rio. On the same page is also Simona Halep. Though, Djokovic is expected to make a glorious run in Rio. It might be his best chance to clinch the golden medal in men`s singles. As he is already heading to 30, in 4 years from now, he might be too old to accomplish something big. The Serb`s best result at the Olympics occurred back in 2008 at Beijing when he finished the third winning the bronze medal. For Djokovic, 12 times Grand Slam winner, this fact is rather unsatisfactory.
Djokovic has few things to worry about in the near future.
When it comes to future of the ATP ranking, some majors changes are unlikely to occur throughout this season. Djokovic has around 5000 points ahead of Andy Murray. Still, there is one scenario which might bring in some extra heat. In the late August, the last Grand Slam of the year will catch the attention. Although it sounds unlikely, if Djokovic will suffer one more early exit as at Wimbledon happened andAndy Murray will win the gap will come down to less than 1000 points. Last year, the Serb won at the US Open by beating Roger Federer in the final rubber thus having to defend 2000 points. Murray lost in the 4th round, so the pressure is something easier to fight with.
Overall, Novak Djokovic dominated the past years on the ATP tour like no one did. If Wimbledon was just a syncope, it`s something to be seen over the following months. The Serb has both mental and physical strength to move forward and also to win other Masters ,Majors, gold medals and so on.

Thứ Ba, 14 tháng 6, 2016

Novak Djokovic admits rivalries with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal play big part in his career

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic admitted his rivalries with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have played a big part in his tennis success in recent years.

After winning his first French Open title, defeating Andy Murray 3-6 6-1 6-2 6-4, Djokovic confessed he was not glad to be part of an era dominated by Federer and Nadal, who have a combined total of 31 Grand Slam titles. 
But Djokovic, who now has 12 major titles in his record, believes it was the rivalries from the Swiss Maestro and King of Clay that made him the mostdominant tennis player in today's game.

"These two guys -- and Andy as well -- the rivalries with all three of the guys have definitely, in a big part... helped me to become a better player and helped me achieve all these things," Djokovic, who completed his first career Grand Slam, said, reports Reuters.

"The rivalries that we have are important for the sport, and in one way or another you try to compare yourself to them and what they have achieved before.

With Federer and Nadal struggling because of injuries and setbacks, this season has become the most ideal moment for Djokovic to cement his tennis legacy. Considering the way world No. 1 is playing, he could catch up with Nadal's 14 major titles and Federer's all-time record 17 Grand Slam titles. 
Djokovic's aim for a calendar Grand Slam, or what he has been calling a "Djoker Slam" has become realistic as he is still the prohibitive favorite to win all major events following an impressive streak of Grand Slam wins. The 29-year-old Djokovic is also in play for a Golden Slam, a feat only Steffi Graf achieved when she won all four Grand Slam events and the Olympic Gold Medal in 1988.

"I don't want to sound arrogant, but I really think everything is achievable in life," Djokovic said.
Djokovic will have plenty of time to rest and savor one of the most important victories in his career as he gets some time off the court to prepare for Wimbledon, his next and lone tournament in the grass-court season.

Chủ Nhật, 8 tháng 5, 2016

Novak Djokovic beats Andy Murray in Madrid Open final

World number one Novak Djokovic beat defending champion Andy Murray 6-2 3-6 6-3 in the Madrid Open final.
The defeat means the 28-year-old Briton will lose his world number two ranking to Roger Federer on Monday.
The Scot was blown away in the opening set, but fought back to level, only to fall to the Serb's power and accuracy in the decider.
Djokovic now moves ahead of Spain's Rafael Nadal with a record 29 ATP Masters 1000 titles.
The Serb underlined his current dominance as he claimed his fifth title in the past six Masters tournaments but he was pushed hard by Murray, exemplified by a 14-minute final game as Djokovic survived six deuces and seven break points to hold for the match.
"The first couple of break points I remember making two mistakes," said Murray.
"It was kind of back and forth from there and unfortunately I couldn't quite break, which was a shame because both of us on the break points until that last game were pretty clinical."
Djokovic broke Murray's serve in the opening game and the 2011 winner gave a masterclass combining powerful ground shots with brutal accuracy as he found the lines with uncanny regularity.
Murray found his second serve coming under huge pressure and Djokovic duly earned a double break before racing to the first set in just 31 minutes.
In the second, however, the Scot's serve began to click into gear and, having won just 17% of points on his second serve in the first set, he increased it to an impressive 60% in the second.
Djokovic made crucial forehand and backhand errors in the third game before serving a double-fault to be broken for only the second time in the tournament.
The Madrid crowd who were muted as Murray beat local favourite Rafael Nadal 7-5 6-4 in Saturday's semi-finals were now encouraging the Briton, who responded with some of his best tennis of the week as he won the set with a cheeky drop shot from the back of the court.
It was Djokovic's turn to regroup and after a comfortable hold needed just one of two break points to take the early initiative in the decider.
But this was a different Murray from the opening set and the Scot immediately broke back with Djokovic again serving a double fault at the crucial moment.
Again, however, the world number one raised the bar and this time it proved crucial with a decisive break in the sixth game.
"When you play against the best players, you are probably not going to win every single time," said Murray. "But you want to make the matches extremely difficult for them: physically and mentally, so it's not comfortable. So I think at least today I did that, but unfortunately didn't get the win.
"It's been a positive week for me this week overal l- a few years ago I wouldn't have thought I'd be winning against Rafa and then pushing Novak this close on a clay court."

BBC tennis correspondent Russell Fuller

"Murray began the match a shadow of the man who had played so well in Madrid all week. The first set wasn't a contest, but once given an opening by the world number one early in the second, Murray started playing with real conviction, and pushed his man to the limit.
"At 2-2 in the decider the match was genuinely in the balance. Djokovic's response, though, was characteristically brilliant, and after surviving a bout of jitters and a 14-minute final game, he deservedly clinched his record 29th Masters series title."

Thứ Sáu, 25 tháng 3, 2016

Novak Djokovic, Kyle Edmund and Roger Federer part of a packed schedule at Miami Open

Novak Djokovic begins his title defence against Britain's Kyle Edmund
Novak Djokovic faces Britain's Kyle Edmund and Roger Federer also starts his title challenge on Friday's packed schedule at the Miami Open.
Djokovic, the defending champion, will take on Edmund in the second round, with the match scheduled to take place at midnight, live on Sky Sports.
The 21-year-old secured his first ever match against the world No 1 after a battling three-set win over Jiri Vesely in the first round.
Edmund has shown he can handle the big stage while playing in the Davis Cup
Edmund has shown he can handle the big stage while playing in the Davis Cup
Djokovic retained his trophy at Indian Wells last week, defeating Milos Raonic in straight sets, and has won four of the last five tournaments in Miami.
But Edmund has performed creditably on the big stage before as he extended world No 15 David Goffin to five sets in a battling singles defeat in last year's Davis Cup final. 

Tough comeback for Fed

Roger Federer is fit again after undergoing knee surgery

Roger Federer is fit again after undergoing knee surgery

Federer will make his comeback from a knee injury when he plays a tricky opening match against Juan Martin Del Potro.
The Swiss was forced to undergo surgery after injuring himself while preparing a bath for his daughters, but has quickly returned to fitness.
The 17-time Grand Slam winner will need to be match sharp against Del Potro, a former US open champion, who himself has overcome injury problems.
Federer has 15 wins from his previous 20 matches against Del Potro, but the pair have not shared the court since the world No 3's victory at the 2013 ATP Tour finals.

Best of the rest

Dominic Thiem is one of the sport's upcoming talents

Dominic Thiem is one of the sport's upcoming talents

Seventh seed Tomas Berdych takes on American Rajeev Ram, while eighth-seeded David Ferrer has been pitted against another home hope, qualifier Taylor Fritz.
Exciting youngster Dominic ThiemRichard GasquetMarin Cilic and Goffinare part of a packed schedule in Florida.

Possible upset?

Albert Ramos-Vinolas is a potentially tough foe for Richard Gasquet

Albert Ramos-Vinolas is a potentially tough foe for Richard Gasquet

If Federer is short of fitness then he could struggle at first against Del Potro, but should find a way past the towering Argentine.
Albert Ramos-Vinolas has performed well this year, reaching a tour semi-final, and he claimed an upset win over Nick Kyrgios at Indian Wells.
The Spaniard is capable of pulling off another surprise result against Frenchman Gasquet.

Brit interest

Johanna Konta can follow Heather Watson into the third round

Johanna Konta can follow Heather Watson into the third round

British No 1 Johanna Konta has been drawn against Danka Kovinic in the second round of the women's event.
Konta will be hoping to join Heather Watson, who has already reached the third round with a straight sets win over 20th seeded Sloane Stephens.

Thứ Tư, 6 tháng 1, 2016

Why Djokovic will increase his chokehold on the game

At age 28, top-ranked Novak Djokovic is at the zenith of his powers. He's fresh off a year in which he won three Grand Slam titles, bringing his total to 10 -- more than such stalwarts as Jimmy Connors, John McEnroe, Ivan Lendl and more than his own "supercoach," Boris Becker.
Last year, Djokovic came within one match of sweeping all four Grand Slam singles titles -- a feat that even his WTA counterpart Serena Williams could not match in her own spectacular 2015.
Djokovic has assembled a loyal, low-key, brutally effective support team. He's a dutiful husband and doting dad. His personal life is not only in order, it's in complete harmony with his professional one.
Last year, Djokovic's principal rivals were unable to contain him. Rafael Nadal misplaced his game, while Roger Federer floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee, but never landed a deadly punch as Djokovic increased his chokehold on the ATP game.
Looking ahead to 2016, the question occurs: Where does he go from here? What do you do for an encore after a year in which you all but ran the table, compiling a record of 82-6 with 11 titles?
You do the hardest thing, which is more of the same. And then some.
"Grand Slams and Olympic Games are the priority of the season, but it's a long season, so I can't really predict what's going to happen or guarantee if I am going to win any of the Grand Slams or all four," Djokovic told reporters shortly after he arrived in Qatar to play the ATP Doha event this week. "Of course, I am going to try to win every tournament and every Grand Slam that I play on, that's kind of the mindset that I have."
That's the appropriate mindset, yet even Djokovic doesn't really know what his most basic, elemental attitude will be once the balls start flying with serious intent. And that's the tricky part. A number of great players hit a wall and abruptly stopped winning major titles well before the realities of age and physical wear and tear became factors -- often taking us by complete surprise.
Bjorn Borg famously walked away from the game, an 11-time Grand Slam champ, burned out at the age of 25.
Granted, Borg was an extreme case. His rival John McEnroe played until he was 33, yet he was done as a Grand Slam singles champ by age 25 at the end of 1984.
Not to get us paranoid or anything, but that was a year during which McEnroe gorged much like Djokovic did in 2015; Mac went 82-3 with 13 titles, still the best single-season winning percentage of the Open era.
McEnroe won seven majors (he often skipped the Australian Open), as did Mats Wilander -- another great player whose run as a Grand Slam champ was surprisingly short-lived. Wilander was 24 in 1988, the year he won three majors (he lost only at Wimbledon) and finally secured the No. 1 ranking. But he quickly spiraled down and out of the game.
Stefan Edberg and Boris Becker each won six majors. But Edberg was done winning the big ones at 26, while Becker did almost all of his damage before he turned 24. He did, however, craft a resurgence that paid off with a final singles title when he was 28.
Is it possible Djokovic has spent himself, after having logged two of the greatest years on record (2011 and 2015)?
It's unlikely. If you look at the players whose reign as Grand Slam champs were compressed, only Edberg was reconciled to his role as a top player the way Djokovic is. McEnroe was a rebel, Wilander a free spirit; Becker was a discontented seeker, Borg a prodigy drowning in the quicksand of his own fame.
Djokovic is a rational, well-adjusted man who appears to cherish his place in the world, accepting it as a privilege rather than an entitlement -- or a burden. But just as important, he also has a few serendipitous, built-in circumstances and incentives that should provide him with any spark he may need as 2016 spools out.
You can start with Djokovic's relationship with the Australian Open.
Melbourne Park is usually Djokovic's launching pad. He's won the tournament four of the past five years. To fully appreciate what that means, remember that the one thing the top players all agree upon is that any year when you win a major is automatically a good year.
One reason Djokovic has borne the pressures of his position so well may be because, in winning the Australian Open, he's frequently crossed the biggest item off a player's to-do list a mere month into the new year. This would be a particularly good year for him to repeat that pattern given the twin tasks he faces within roughly sixty days of each other starting (with any luck) in early June.
If there was a silver lining for Djokovic when he lost last season's French Open final to Stan Wawrinka, it's that it left the Serb with a mission for 2016. Winning at Roland Garros remains the outstanding piece of unfinished business on Djokovic's résumé.
In fact, preparation for the French Open -- mental and emotional, if not technical and physical -- is likely to be the major underlying driver in all of Djokovic's activities long before it emerges as the main theme in tennis this spring.
However Djokovic's Parisian quest turns out, he also will have the Olympic Games to play in Rio de Janeiro less than two months (and one Wimbledon title defense) after Roland Garros.
Djokovic makes no secret of his patriotic feelings, but thus far he's won just one Olympic medal for Serbia -- a bronze in singles at the Beijing game in 2008. The tennis in Rio will be played on Djokovic-friendly hard courts, but under an Andy Murray and Roger Federer-friendly best-of-three format.
So the most surprising thing about Djokovic's 2015 is that he's still left himself plenty to do in 2016, and that's probably bad news for his rivals.

Novak Djokovic Advances to Quarterfinals at Qatar Open

Novak Djokovic advanced to the quarterfinals of the Qatar Open by beating Fernando Verdasco 6-2, 6-2 Wednesday.
Djokovic, who saved two break points in his service game, is now 8-4 against the Spaniard. He's also on a 17-match winning streak against Spanish players dating back to a 2014 loss to Tommy Robredo.
Djokovic will play eighth-seeded Leonardo Mayer of Argentina in the quarterfinals.