Sports

Novak Djokovic gets more rest for Sunday match: US Open 2016

Novak Djokovic gets more rest for Sunday match: US Open 2016

Novak Djokovic gets more rest for Sunday match: US Open 2016 tennis images

Novak Djokovic has gotten pretty lucky at the 2016 US Open after coming back from an injury. He’s made it to the fourth round for the 10th consecutive year, and this year it’s thanks to injuries to two opponents.

So it made sense that the defending champion and No. 1 seed would spend extra time practicing in Arthur Ashe Stadium under the watchful eye of coach Boris Becker on Friday after spending a grand total of 31 minutes of match time on the court over the second and third rounds.

“This particular situation I never had in my Grand Slam career. But considering the stage of the season, the amount of matches I’ve played, what I’ve been through with my body, I think it’s actually good to have some days off and then shorter matches, from one side,” Djokovic said. “From the other side, sure, as you are approaching the second week of the Grand Slam, you want to have match play, and you want to have time spent on the center court before you face one of the top players.”

2016 us open round 4 mens singles

Yes, Djokovic got another free pass at Flushing Meadows, advancing this time when Mikhail Youzhny stopped because of a strained left hamstring while trailing 4-2 after a little more than a half-hour of play.

Youzhny received treatment from a trainer early on, getting his left leg wrapped, but briefly tried to continue. After holding serve in the sixth game, closing it with an overhead putaway up at the net, the Russian – a semifinalist in New York in 2006 and 2010, and a former top-10 player now ranked 61st – shook his head and told the chair umpire he couldn’t keep going.

“I’ll take it,” Djokovic said. “I’m moving on and focusing on the next one.”

Djokovic did not play at all on Wednesday, when the man he was supposed to face in the second round, Jiri Vesely, withdrew from the tournament a couple of hours before that match because of inflammation in his left forearm.

novak djokovic gets more rest when youzhny quits us open

“There’s plenty of things to work on. That’s the beauty of sport: Every day is different. The challenge is every day you feel different on the court. I work more or less on every aspect of my game,” Djokovic said.

“The first week of a Grand Slam, obviously, things are not 100 percent, so you are getting way through the tournament. I didn’t get too much of match play,” Djokovic said. “I’ll try to get on the practice court once more.”

And that he did, changing out of his white collared match shirt into a gray T-shirt and getting in about an hour of training. As Becker stood nearby, tossing over tennis balls, Djokovic hit serve after serve. Then he hit return after return of serves from a practice partner.

A few hundred fans remained in the stands at Ashe, enjoying that rare chance for an up-close look at a man who has won 12 Grand Slam titles, including two at the U.S. Open and two this year. Plenty of cell phone photos were taken.

Djokovic arrived in New York with a sore left wrist. But in his first-round victory way back on Monday, he experienced problems with his right arm. He was massaged by a trainer after only five games, then repeatedly shook that arm or flexed his elbow and grimaced following serves, some of which were far slower than he usually hits. He also dropped a set in an opening-round Grand Slam match for the first time since 2010.

“The arm is doing very well. Everything … is going in the right direction,” Djokovic said Friday. “I feel significantly better now than I (did) at the beginning of the tournament.”

On Sunday, maybe he’ll finally get a chance to test how he feels. He will be scheduled to play 84th-ranked Kyle Edmund of Britain for a spot in the quarterfinals.

Sports
@movietvtechgeek

Luka Alario is our latest Soccer writer who hails from Italy. He's as passionate about Soccer as we are about football so he's a great addition to our sports team.

More in Sports

Novak Djokovic in Acapulco Draw, Could Face Rafael Nadal 2017 images

Novak Djokovic in Acapulco Draw, Could Face Rafael Nadal

Shane LambertFebruary 25, 2017
2017 nba trade deadline winners and losers images

2017 NBA Trade Deadline Winners and Losers

Chris MauriceFebruary 24, 2017
Angelique Kerber, Serena Williams to battle for No. 1 in March 2017 images

Angelique Kerber, Serena Williams to battle for No. 1 in March

Shane LambertFebruary 23, 2017
carmelo anthony looking safe with knicks as trade deadline hits 2017 images

Carmelo Anthony looking safe with Knicks as trade deadline hits

Chris MauriceFebruary 23, 2017
Top 5 Quarterbacks to watch in NFL 2017 images

Top 5 Quarterbacks to watch in NFL 2017

Shane MclendonFebruary 22, 2017
kevin garnett blames aau for killing nba 2017 images

Kevin Garnett blames AAU for killing NBA

Chris MauriceFebruary 22, 2017
kyrie irving seems unsure on earth is flat comment now 2017

Kyrie Irving now unsure on ‘earth is flat’ comment

Chris MauriceFebruary 21, 2017
Pelicans Acquire DeMarcus Cousins from Kings for a Bag of Chips and a Flat Coca Cola 2017 images

Pelicans Acquire DeMarcus Cousins from Kings for a Bag of Chips and a Flat Coca-Cola

Chris MauriceFebruary 21, 2017
Darrelle Revis Felonies 2017 images

Darrelle Revis Felonies

Shane MclendonFebruary 20, 2017

Subscribe to our Daily Newsletter

You will only receive one per day. You'll also get a free THE WALKING DEAD graphic novel with your subscription