New York, August 27
Only a dozen unforced errors. Every shot crisp in windy situations. Top-ranked Novak Djokovic had all components of his recreation working whereas advancing to the semifinals of the Western & Southern Open.
Djokovic had no issues together with his creaky neck or the swirling winds throughout a 6-Three 6-1 victory on Wednesday over Jan-Lennard Struff that was by far his finest exhibiting of the week.
So far, no rust in any respect after the lengthy layoff from aggressive tennis.
“Everything was worked on in the last six months, I had plenty of time,” Djokovic stated. “I worked on every single thing. It’s great it’s paying off so early after the break.”
Djokovic examined optimistic for COVID-19 after exhibition matches he organised in Serbia and Croatia in June with no social distancing.
In his match on Monday in opposition to Ricardas Berankis, Djokovic had his sore neck massaged twice by a coach throughout a 7-6(2) 6-Four victory that included seven double faults. The neck has gotten higher, and so has his total recreation.
“Right now it’s not a concern,” he stated. “It’s still not 100 per cent but it’s close to that. I’ve been gaining more range in my movement of the neck every single day, so no complaints.”
In the semifinals, he’ll face Roberto Bautista Agut, who knocked out defending champion Daniil Medvedev earlier within the day.
Medvedev failed to shut it out within the second set, and Bautista Agut rallied for a 1-6 6-Four 6-Three victory that eradicated one more prime participant out of the tune-up match for the US Open.
Djokovic is the one participant left within the match with an ATP Masters 1000 title to his credit score.
Medvedev led 4-Three within the second earlier than letting it slip away. He transformed solely 5 of 20 break factors within the match and swatted his racket in opposition to the court docket in frustration on the finish.
“Even in the third set I had my chances and didn’t take them,” Medvedev stated.
Bautista Agut reached his third Masters semifinal and his first since 2016. He wanted a set to regulate to the breezy, cooler situations on court docket.
“It’s never easy to come back and play good at first,” he stated. “I have to be patient, to try to enjoy every single match I play here after six months without competing. Just pleased and happy to be in the semifinals.”
Medvedev hoisted the champion’s Rookwood Pottery cup final yr in Mason, Ohio, the place the match is held yearly. This yr’s occasion was moved to the US Open web site in Flushing Meadows due to pandemic precautions, making a two-tournament occasion with out spectators. AP