After several minutes of interruption, Djokovic was able to win 7: 6 (7: 1) 6: 4 3: 6 4: 6 6: 2 against Fritz. He will now face Canadian Milos Raonic if he is fit again by Sunday. With a score of 1: 2 in the third set, the 33-year-old Serb left the field to seek treatment for an abdominal muscle injury. “I just tried to stay in the game. It is definitely one of the most special victories of my career, that I managed to do it under these circumstances, ”he said on the pitch.
The 33-year-old prevented his fourth out before the round of 16 on his 17th Melbourne appearance, with this major having to go over five sets for the eleventh time. Djokovic then canceled the mandatory press conference. He left it open whether he could play the Canadian Milos Raonic in the round of 16 on Sunday. “I really don’t know,” said Djokovic. “I don’t know if I’ll recover from this in less than two days. I don’t know whether I can go back on the pitch or not. “
Spectators had to go
In addition, there was another novelty for the spectators at 11.30 p.m .: The game was interrupted because of a five-day lockdown in Melbourne, all spectators had to leave the stadium to be home by 11.59 p.m. at the latest. Because a new lockdown was imposed for the metropolis in the Australian state of Victoria because of the coronavirus outbreak in an airport hotel, the tournament will continue without spectators for the time being. The next time in front of fans, the earliest play will be in the semi-finals on Thursday.
Fritz saw himself impaired in his race to catch up. He won set four after the ten-minute break, but then lost the momentum. “It is absolutely ridiculous that you have to leave the pitch for ten minutes in the middle of a Grand Slam match.” That reduced his chances of winning. “It hurt me because the fans pushed me. These are simply not worthy conditions for a third Grand Slam round. “
Strong performance by Zverev
Zverev presented himself in strong form against his favorite opponent Adrian Mannarino at 6: 3 6: 3 6: 1. Mannarino had defeated the Lower Austrian Dennis Novak in round one in three sets. The number six seeded German is now head-to-head with 6-0 victories against the French. “I was a bit tired at the beginning, so I tried to play very powerfully from the start,” said a very cheerful Zverev after his impressive performance.
“I wanted you not to have to sit in the heat for so long,” he said to the audience. The last remaining German tennis player in Melbourne will now face Dusan Lajovic (SRB / 23) on Sunday. If he and Djokovic win in the round of 16, they would clash. For the winner, it could go against Thiem in the semifinals. The winner from Thiem (AUT / 3) against Grigor Dimitrov (BUL / 18) will face Felix Auger-Aliassime (CAN / 20) or the qualifier Aslan Karazew (RUS) in the quarter-finals.
Schwartzman fails because of Kazarew
The latter got the surprising out of the number eight seeded Argentine Diego Schwartzman. Thiem’s good tour friend had to bow to the little-known Russian with 3: 6 3: 6 3: 6. The 27-year-old world number 114. Karazew had qualified for the first time for the main competition of a major tournament in Melbourne in the tenth attempt at all, now he is in the round of the last 16.
Williams only briefly with problems
This is not unusual for Serena Williams. The 39-year-old American is still four steps short of the 24th Grand Slam title she is aiming for – it would equalize Margaret Court’s all-time record. Williams, who was number ten, defeated Russian Anastasia Potapova after starting difficulties and defending two set balls 7: 6 (7/5) 6: 2. Naomi Osaka (JPN / 3) left Tunisian Ons Jabeur only five games at 6: 3 6: 2.
At the bottom of the table, Iga Swiatek and Simona Halep qualified for a direct round of 16 duel. The Polish French Open winner Swiatek gave the French Fiona Ferro 6: 4 6: 3 the disadvantage, Halep prevailed against the Russian Veronika Kudermoetowa 6: 1 6: 3. The Romanian had just turned things around in the second round against the Australian Alja Tomljanovic after 2: 5 deficit in the third set.