Let’s Talk About Novak Djokovic’s Antics During The Australian Open Final
by Sean Randall | February 5th, 2015, 12:46 pm
  • 94 Comments

This seems to be a hot topic of debate, so I’ll weigh in with a quick note here.

Yes, during the final Sunday against Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic may have taken some extra liberties with his alleged ailments.

Djokovic fell early on and appeared to injure his right thumb. A trainer was called and the injury was attended to. There’s no real dispute there. But late in the second and into third set, Djokovic was visibly seen stumbling around, losing his balance, falling to the court and in some sort of constant distress in his lower body for a brief period of time. Then, just as Murray seized a lead in the third, it miraculously cleared up.

Here’s how Murray saw it: “I have no idea what the issue was. He obviously looked like he was in quite a bad way at the beginning of the third set and came back unbelievable at the end of that set.

“Then the way he was hitting the ball in the fourth and moving was impressive. So, yeah, I don’t know exactly what the issue was for him.

“The third set was frustrating because I got a bit distracted when he fell on the ground after a couple of shots. It appeared that he was cramping and I let that distract me a little bit.”

Djokovic said it wasn’t cramps but gave a rather vague explanation which didn’t help matters. “I was just weak. I went through the physical crisis in the matter of 20 minutes. And, honestly, didn’t feel that too many times in my career.”

The end result was Djokovic winning 12 of the last 13 games to race to his fifth Australian Open title. And left Murray and his fans more than a little disgruntled over how Djokovic acted on the court.

And Novak wasn’t a model man. Let’s be honest. But here’s the problem for Murray and his supporters:

ANDY MURRAY PULLS THIS FAKE INJURY ACT ALL THE TIME!

So pot meet kettle. Sorry, Andy, you don’t have the right to question the legitimacy of an opponent’s injury WHEN YOU DO IT ALL THE TIME!!

Granted, this was a final of a Grand Slam and Andy and Novak are apparently good buddies, so it wasn’t in good taste if Novak was indeed doing it for gamesmanship, but bottom line, this is on Murray who cannot let an opponent’s antics get in his head during a major match like this. And unfortunately for Murray in the end he got a taste of his own medicine.

Instead of being distracted by Djokovic’s injury, Murray should have taken a page from his old coach Ivan Lendl’s playbook and tried to further injure Novak. But Murray isn’t Lendl and Lendl decided to leave Andy a year ago. Maybe this is more evidence why he left.


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94 Comments for Let’s Talk About Novak Djokovic’s Antics During The Australian Open Final

alice Says:

well said Sean.
any one else remember Tommy Haas’s comments over this: that it’s hard to play when someone appears injured and then starts running around like a cat.
he said the worst person for him over this was Andy Murray!! and that this was something widely discussed in the locker room. (no it wasn’t just about the FO – it was about a pattern of behaviour over an extended period of time).
So it’s time the anti-Nole comments stopped in my view – it’s way over the top and is mainly in the british press anyway ie sour grapes.


brando Says:

I am not going to say anything on this topic other than: how can anyone not see that footage and not laugh at the exaggerated behavior on hand. It’s not gamesmanship or whatever but moreso: comically exaggerated behavior. Just look at it: ridiculously exaggerated. Hence: why the international media are now saying he should have won an Oscar not a 5th AO title. you look at that footage and you can see why many are turned off by this behavior. NO ONE can see that video and deny how exaggerated and above all else: plain comical some of that behavior was. Plain ridiculous. Out.


jane Says:

lol, sean; i thought we were already talking about it (on the other thread). :) but it is interesting to read your thoughts.

here’s part of what flink at tennis channel said:

“The skeptics speculated that Djokovic might have been resorting to gamesmanship, feigning an injury when he was really feeling fine. I don’t subscribe to that notion. He was obviously suffering in some way. I am convinced that the reason he was weakened was the struggle he had with his health before the tournament. It caught up with him in the end because he had to go five sets with Wawrinka and four hard sets with Murray. Under normal circumstances, he would have been much fresher and fitter down the stretch, but this was anything but normal.

I believe he was genuinely exhausted and baffled by how he felt. But even if the skeptics were right and Djokovic was resorting to gamesmanship, why would Murray fall for it”


brando Says:

“mainly in the british press”: erm that’s a Fox video, Australian articles posted elsewhere and international coverage, comments in this regard.


Sean Randall Says:

Hi Alice, I remember that Haas match. I think Murray had the trainer out in the middle of the court to tend to his ankle. I thought Andy had died!

http://www.tennis-x.com/story/2007-03-17/k.php


brando Says:

Lmfao: just saw that video again, forget the gamesmanship or not thing and just watch it for amusement: it’s funny. Cheers nole for the laughs, truly the djoker. The Shanghai one especially: as if the alien from the film alien is about to emerge from his chest lol.


courbon Says:

This is what John Lloyd ( British commentator during the match ):
It could be a gameship, could be not, but it is ironic that Andys is upset-he often looks injured, grabing his legs and so on, but then runs like a cheeta!
…….enough said…..


brando Says:

@courbon: my man what’s your honest take on it? Do you think he gave bait to Andy and muzza bought it or it was some ott reaction to issues?


Ben Pronin Says:

Brando why do you even bother saying you’re done with the subject only to come back 5 seconds later? You obviously have a lot of nonsense to say. What about Nadal “nearly” throwing up and walking around like he’s dying in the second round to win that match late in the 5th(!) set and then playing his next two matches like he was fresh as a daisy?

It’s just incredibly ironic that Nadal is lauded as some hero and then Murray complains about that hypocrisy and then goes on to complain about Djokovic. Funniest non-drama ever!


courbon Says:

@ Brando: I honestly don’t know what to think about it.But it could be both-he had genuine problem but he made it look bigger then it is?
But My point is this-if there was gameship ( only if ) in question,
even then should not be a problem-
because they all do it time to time!
( and specially Andy… )
Anyway, can wait for IW to start and then we have solid 6 months of great tournament , one after another ( also I’m hoping to go RG this year )


brando Says:

@courbon: agree fully my man. I have said it before and I’ll it again: the fault lies with Andy here. Whether novak was ill or playing the game is a matter of opinion. Each to their own. Andy here though-obviously- lost the plot over it. His fault not Novak. And the sad thing is this: it was his 8th final, I think 24th match v Novak so he has no excuse. He’s too experienced to have let that lead to him collapsing. I think of all his losses this one willvsting him the most because of how he lost it. And I agree as I said earlier: none of these guys are innocent, pure and without sin. They all have played the game at one time or another. Andy I think is a honest player, but yeah I can see for sure why some are saying the pot meets kettle thing. Moving on: yeah I am looking forward to the season, especially Indian Wells. Hope you go to RG: most picturesque slam there is.


Wog Boy Says:

This is the match from 2005 in which one Nole retired, just check first few minutes, it 30 minutes link, and you will see the same problem, Nole has a ptoblem, he knows it and is managing it the best way he can, but haters are going to hate, that is what the do the best:

http://youtu.be/Btcazerryrw


django Says:

courbon
Funny that Lloyd said that. Cahill and Pmac also said….usually it’s Andy doing it. Lol
The bottom line is Djokovic has 8 and congrats to his team.
Sean thanks for another great piece.

Let’s hurry up with IW and Miami and get down and dirty with clay.


Wog Boy Says:

Funny thing that nobody is talking about Andy SF match against Berdych. In that match, after doing one of his impossible returns, in the first set, he grabed his, well, backside complaining to his box “it is burning, it is burning” and he kept repeating that until the end of the first set. Commentators were worried, so was I, that he got injured when he chased that ball, but guess what, the moment he started to demolish Berdych in the second set it was not “burning” any more, until the end of the match.


Hippy Chick Says:

Games ebb and flow,players are only responsible for themselves and the way they are playing,Andy probably lost because he colapsed mentally,or because Novak was playing better,but most probably due to a bit of both?but its done so time to move on,congrats to Novak who was indeed the worthy winner and is an amazing playing, winning 8 GS and counting is a fantastic achievment,this coming from a Rafa fan whom contrary to public opinion does not hate Novak OUT….


django Says:

Wogboy
Maybe it’s not convenient to remember that!
What was burning? Do we know?
After the match brad Gilbert put on a little video clip montage from during the changeovers. Andy was so ballistic and melted down it was hard to watch really.
The press is going to have to get over the bitter grapes sooner or later.


Hippy Chick Says:

Courbon enjoy yourself at RG this year if you go?im so jealous,can hubby and i come to yours and stay lol?….


brando Says:

“The bottom line is Djokovic has 8 and congrats to his team.”: yep and on that note the tournament ended. So should we. “Let’s hurry up with IW and Miami”: yeah we need to move on as the tour is. Anything we say now about AO- over 4 days after its end- will likely not be anything good. It’s time we move on like the players. I cannot wait for Indian Wells and Miami: amazing, beautiful, warm, enjoyable leg of the tour. Only bum note about it is the fact it does not lead to a slam like Montreal and Cincinnati, which builds up to USO. Other than that though it’s a really enjoyable period in the season with warm weather, packed crowds, players really keen and fresh, great tennis too. It cannot come soon enough!


brando Says:

PS: in terms of natural beauty of setting: indian wells, Miami, monte Carlo and Rome are just a treat to watch. Also Australian open and of course Roland garros. Beautiful arenas and surrounding setting.


Hippy Chick Says:

BTW I might sound shallow,but as im talking about Novaks looks as opposed to Rafa it shouldnt matter?but just to say that picture is super sexy hot….


Humble Rafa Says:

You have none of these problems with me. If I am hurt, I am hurt. I don’t play well, throw in the towel.

A shame that the game of tennis has to deal with guys like this. More Humbles please.


Yolita Says:

Andy is (or rather wss) also one of my favourite players. And let’s face it: both him and Novak are prone to exaggerate their physical distress, call them hypocondriacs, drama queens, whatever. But in general, over the past 8 years, Andy does it much more often than Novak.
I was very disappointed with Andy’s behaviour during his SF and F matches: yelling at his opponent, yelling at his box, fist-pumping at Vallverdú, practically not giving Novak a proper handshake, not even mustering a smile during the speeches, failing to even applaud when Novak got his trophy.
Making up excuses at his presser and throwing shade on Novak was the cherry on the cake.
The fact that this is the conversation the week after Novak managed an 8th slam, an achievemnet so few players have managed makes me very angry…as always, the media behaving like a fan.
Imagine Novak acting like Andy if Andy had won. How would the media cover the whole thing?
Now, if Andy truly believes that that’s the reason he lost, I am happy: he’ll never beat Novak again with that childish attitude.


brando Says:

@HR: lmfao classic post!:-)


brando Says:

@yolita: your a fine poster, I find some of what you say disagreeable but this part is correct: “The fact that this is the conversation the week after Novak managed an 8th slam”. That’s sad and true. People need to let it go now. It’s in the past: history. All that is left is the present and the future. Let’s look forward as opposed to continually talking about something that is well worn out by now. Let’s all move forward and hope for better display all round from all.


jane Says:

yolita,
there’s always this to brighten your day! (and any other nole fans. :))

http://fbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xfp1/t20.0-8/s240x240/10012636_615548695216817_1984171459818964579_o.jpg

i do wonder, like you, what would’ve happened if the situation were reversed. sometimes i think nole gets a bad rap in the media. sigh…

oh well.

onward and upward!


Ron Smith Says:

It’s all about mental toughness. Whether he was faking it or not….who cares…its legal either way. Though this behavior is frowned upon if true…Murray just showed us another reason why he’s not mentally tough enough to win the Australian Open. Yes Lendl would have tried to injury him further its why he was so mentally tough. I’m already sick of the cry baby British media on this issue. If Murray had done it and won the match it would probably not even be mentioned. They always want their guy or girl to win so bad that it’s very laughable. I remember all those years at Wimbledon when they rooted so hard for Henman to win every year and they wrote so many articles about the great chances that Henman had at winning Wimbledon. The point is that the British press is very biased towards Djokovic on this one.


Lisa Says:

Discussion about this entirely media overcooked “injury antics” is way over the top. Instead of writing about insanely great tennis, breathtakingly fast and precise returns, second serves, stamina, great volleys the media is going totally overboard, pedaling this controversy to create more clicks. They tried so hard to pose the questions to Andy in a way, which would give them the juicy material they wanted. Andy’s emotions were still raw, so the complaining about the match and the bigger fog taking his bone away was came handy. Enough already. Besides, can someone explain to me Why does it look so impossible to feel weak after 2 demanding sets – I saw a player who tried to figure out how to get back in the match by shortening points and save his energy, which he did. He had the replenishing electrolytes drink, he probably pumped himself up with positive talk, played great points, soldiered through and won. Andy needs to mature, stop whining and develop championship mentality if he wants to win more GS and stop looking for excuses. Novak never does this when his opponent wins. He says: He was a better player today. British media is pathetic. Tabloid style trash, repeating same fabricated stuff over and over – it just proves they have nothing better and smarter to write. They also can’t make peace with Novak holding his eight trophy. Imagine that – a guy from a war ravaged country plays superb tennis, is number 1, while UK spends millions for tennis education and they don’t get the quality and the result their snobby egos feel they should receive. Shame on them to try and look for needle in the haystack to tarnish the hard earned and fought of win for Novak


jane Says:

lisa, i too have wondered if they tried to goad andy into saying something about nole. is the media is at the heart of much of this? i listened to/watched nole’s press conference, and it was predominately 1 or 2 journalists who pressed this issue, whereas others were asking nole about the match, how he felt about the achievement, and so on. they all weren’t interested in making a stink about the so-called “antics”. furthermore, andy tweeted nole afterward, saying congrats publicly, and nole has openly said he’d be happy to chat with andy, to clear the air or whatever. it’s the media that perpetuates perceptions of players, good or bad, fairly or unfairly. sigh.

it’s a shame because andy has a lot to be happy about: his first slam final since the surgery; a deep run with amelie; feeling healthy again. clearly nole has a lot to be happy about too: his own record at the AO; his 8th slam, joining elite company; winning over stan after losing to him last year. all of these things – and, as you point out “fast and precise returns, second serves, stamina, great volleys” – are sadly being overshadowed.


Lisa Says:

Jane, that’s exactly right – those controversy seeking vampires, who call themselves journalists are flooding the internet with their titles about so called injury (novak replied there was no injury), how he is ready to talk with Andy and making it a huge issue – really with bad intention to hurt nole’s image. Really sad they took all the joy and celebration momentum away (intentionally) and turned it into a soap opera. Personally, I think he should stopped being so nice at the conference and stop being defensive. I would just stare at them and ask them to try ask him a question with substance for a change and refrain from speculating. He should expose them for what the are doing instead of having to politely defend himself ad if he is guilty of something.


Patson Says:

@Lisa

Damned if you do, damned if you don’t sort of situation for Nole. In his mind, he’s trying his very best to get the media to treat him like a world no. 1. On the other hand, you have people in the media who tend to ask these stupid questions. Come March though, and everybody would be talking about the Masters and the tune-ups for the French open. All this will be forgotten pretty soon.


Lisa Says:

@patson – you are right – it could overemphasize things and do more harm than good. Can’t wait for the start of IW and the change of subject


Hippy Chick Says:

I wonder if the situation had been reversed?well the situation wouldnt have been any different,Murray is pretty much the same as any Brit when it comes to sport Beckham,Rooney etc you name it,the British media here builds someone up,and takes great delight in knocking them down again,they are notorious for it,Andy has also had a hard time in the press this week too,even when he won Wimbledon some were saying we need a proper Brit winning the title as Murray is actually a Scotsman….


pete Says:

I just re-watched the match and they played so many excruciating brutal points with the espn commentators in awe of the physicality. Djokovic and those extreme split like stretches, nearly 2.5 hours of that highest of quality rallies in those first two sets. How is it not surprising that they would feel the effects? It seems djokovic knew he could not keep up at that rate thus changed his strategy and shortened the points. I would understand some of this bantering if a medical time out was called for cramping, etc but that was not the case. Even Andy went through his limping motions towards the end. Man up and accept defeat, he was simply outplayed on this day! Unlike recent murray djokovic matches this one was quite exciting because they both played extremely aggressive along with their amazing defensive capabilities! That was a great final and Murray is back among the elite! Djokovic was just a bit stronger and wiser on this day


jane Says:

andy and kim are getting married in april apparently; just read it this morning.


Jermaine Says:

Anybody who plays tennis knows that players amplify the slightest of injuries even if they’re trailing just a little…it’s often an excuse for poor shot selection etc. But bottom line is, this is a grand slam final, even if your opponent is retching on the Court you have to play your game…in it to win it!


Lisa Says:

@pete I agree. No injury time out, only feeling week after long tough rallies and overcoming this in a smart way. These people who wrote “shame on you” and other nonsense are heartless and they probably never ran 2 miles in their entire life


courbon Says:

@ django: I did not know that other said it also. Well, like you said-lets get dirty on clay!I’m not Rafa fan but I love clay tournaments

@ Hippy: Blonde Yorkshire lass can come to my place any time.
Hairy Yorkshire lad NOT!
So choose, RG or hubby???? (-:


Hippy Chick Says:

Courbon LMAO,hubbys a hairy Midlands lad actually,but i see what you mean,anyway he detests tennis,only time he was ever interested in tennis was the Murray/Djoker Wimbledon final in 2013,other than that hes strictly a football fan through and through York City FC,so RG it is,see you in a few weeks cheers :-D….


chris ford1 Says:

Another good Yolita post. My own views:

1. Novak is a drama queen, and I mean it in a good way – he makes a match into an display of open emotions he has. No stoic who keeps it all inside. Part of the reasons why Italians love his matches. Passion. He is also like a puppydog. No amount of petting and love and cheers from his box or the crowd can ever be enough. When he is down, he wants to be lifted. When he goes walkabout, and like his demonstrative injuries they are rarely pure act because he loses sometimes on a 3rd set Montreal Final tiebreaker gone walkabout, or really is as bothered by 120F heat at a USO Final as he appears to be.
But he does embellish. Even his wife stresses on the amped up emotions and needs to take a “Chill-out walk” when he plays sometimes.

2. Andy detracted from Nole’s victory with his little personal pity party and illusion that he would have beat Nole one-handed clutching his back and leg as usual…if Nole had only played fair. No…the truth is that Djokovic is a better player than Andy. Regardless. Muzz needs to watch it. It only takes a few fuming and snippy acts after a match to get a reputation as a sore loser that wants to take away credit to the victor when credit is due. Or a stink face lasting an entire Awards ceremony, even when the guy is wishing your fiancee great happiness..
Everyone remembers Fed’s hilarious USO snit fit…”I mean he just slaps at the ball. Maybe that is how they taught him, but I was never taught to play in such a unprofessional way..Just slapping. That is not talent. It is slapping away and counting on luck..”
Credit to Djokovic and Nadal for being gracious losers. Especially Nadal, who truly can be ripped up inside about a loss but would never tell public or press he was robbed of a win. Of course, his camp unfortunately has lapsed into always explaining a Rafa loss as only due to injury, illness, rustiness…

3. I can’t help being in the “media has an anti-Djokovic conspiracy going on” camp. They always try to diminish him and safeguard their annointed Greats who Djokovic dared take victories from and diminish the Fed and Rafa stats that deserved to get bigger without that meddling Serb interloper “ruining our Fedal love”.
Djokovic made his 23rd straight QF, achieved a remarkable 5th AO title, is almost guaranteed to pass Rafa’s 141 weeks as #1 and could eclipse McEnroe by years end to become the 5th most weeks as #1 player in the Open Era.
And the main story we are supposed to go away with is British tabs claim that ol’ “Clutch and Grab” Andy is unhappy with Djoker Drama and would have easily won but for that???
Really??
I mean Nole likes Muzz and the whole Murray clamn has since he was 11 and will when he is 50…but if I was Amelie Mauresmo I would be telling Andy that Nole may just be out to try and crush him the next several matches they play to show that Andy was going to lose in any case.


chris ford1 Says:

Another good Yolita post. My own views:

1. Novak is a drama queen, and I mean it in a good way – he makes a match into an display of open emotions he has. No stoic who keeps it all inside. Part of the reasons why Italians love his matches. Passion. He is also like a puppydog. No amount of petting and love and cheers from his box or the crowd can ever be enough. When he is down, he wants to be lifted. When he goes walkabout, and like his demonstrative injuries they are rarely pure act because he loses sometimes on a 3rd set Montreal Final tiebreaker gone walkabout, or really is as bothered by 120F heat at a USO Final as he appears to be.
But he does embellish. Even his wife stresses on the amped up emotions and needs to take a “Chill-out walk” when he plays sometimes.

2. Andy detracted from Nole’s victory with his little personal pity party and illusion that he would have beat Nole one-handed clutching his back and leg as usual…if Nole had only played fair. No…the truth is that Djokovic is a better player than Andy. Regardless. Muzz needs to watch it. It only takes a few fuming and snippy acts after a match to get a reputation as a sore loser that wants to take away credit to the victor when credit is due. Or a stink face lasting an entire Awards ceremony, even when the guy is wishing your fiancee great happiness..
Everyone remembers Fed’s hilarious USO snit fit…”I mean he just slaps at the ball. Maybe that is how they taught him, but I was never taught to play in such a unprofessional way..Just slapping. That is not talent. It is slapping away and counting on luck..”
Credit to Djokovic and Nadal for being gracious losers. Especially Nadal, who truly can be ripped up inside about a loss but would never tell public or press he was robbed of a win. Of course, his camp unfortunately has lapsed into always explaining a Rafa loss as only due to injury, illness, rustiness…

3. I can’t help being in the “media has an anti-Djokovic conspiracy going on” camp. They always try to diminish him and safeguard their annointed Greats who Djokovic dared take victories from and diminish the Fed and Rafa stats that deserved to get bigger without that meddling Serb interloper “ruining our Fedal love”.
Djokovic made his 23rd straight QF, achieved a remarkable 5th AO title, is almost guaranteed to pass Rafa’s 141 weeks as #1 and could eclipse McEnroe by years end to become the 5th most weeks as #1 player in the Open Era.
And the main story we are supposed to go away with is British tabs claim that ol’ “Clutch and Grab” Andy is unhappy with Djoker Drama and would have easily won but for that???
Really??
I mean Nole likes Muzz and the whole Murray clamn has since he was 11 and will when he is 50…but if I was Amelie Mauresmo I would be telling Andy that Nole may just be out to try and crush him the next several matches they play to show that Andy was going to lose in any case.


chris ford1 Says:

Sorry for the double post folks. I only clicked submit once! I can’t edit one post off. Moderator…can you delete one??


Helen Anthony Says:

I felt Andy Murray,the British press, and British fans were very unfair to Novak Djokovic. Sore losers and poor sports. They seem to forget that Andy Murray had two days’ rest whereas Novak had only one day’s rest. Further, Novak had a grueling semi-final battle with Wawrinka who is physically very strong. Novak is the most gracious loser in tennis. Never pouts or glowers when he loses but always gives a gracious speech and congratulates the winner (unlike Nadal and Federer who stand grim faced and glowering when they lose). In other words, “I should always win.
How dare you win, you usurper”.

And what about Federer? He bowed out of the last tournament in London when he was supposed to play Novak for the title claiming a bad back. He turns up a few days’ later in excellent shape playing for the Swiss team and they won.

One final word: It has just been announced that Novak had an MRI on his ankle which showed an injury and will miss the next tournament. Put that in your pipe and smoke it all you Poor Sports.


Scoffer Says:

I believe these two drama queens deserve each other. As a fan of tennis I watched the final and all I can say is dull, in fact the only amusing thing was the pantomime display by the joker. There is a reason why nadal and fedèrer are loved, and it’s nothing to to with numbers, it’s the way they play.


metan Says:

It is getting funny and funny, that’s how tennis became more interested.


Steven Says:

Novak is the undisputed number one player in the world and appears to be in the early stages of an extended period of dominance. His thrashing of a player of Andy’s calibre was a grim sign of things to come in this years Grand Slams. I don’t begrudge Andy his honest and bitter feelings, given that embarrassing fourth set mauling by Novak. Andy knows very well what he is up against with Novak, as evidently he couldn’t help but laugh when talking about coming back and winning next year.


SG1 Says:

You guys have to admit though, tennis (and specifically professional tennis) requires an extraordinary level of physical coordination. You never see Federer or Nadal or even Murray suddenly attacked by a case of clutziness (for lack of a better word). When Novak makes these weird movements, he doesn’t really look like a pro athlete out there. It’s all pretty fishy stuff but as Sean correctly said, it was up to Murray to turn on the killer instinct and finish him off. All of this complaining just comes off as sour grapes.


Okiegal Says:

Helen’s comment about Novak’s ankle issue……watched that clip again and he did land awkwardly on it. I am not surprised he has an injury from this “bad” landing. What would really be weird about this is if he was doing all of these theatrical moves on purpose and then hurts himself…..shame on him! I’m not saying he did or didn’t but some people on this forum seem to think so…….There is a you tube out that shows him doing some of these flopping fish out of water moves from other matches……but I’m still giving him the benefit of the doubt.


Roger L. Simon Says:

I was extremely impressed with Chris Ford1′s post above, not just because I agree with him – I do – but because it is quite well written.

I also am perplexed but the media’s generally negative reaction to Djokovic. The truth is Nole is a PR natural, funny, charismatic, etc. I would hate to think it’s all slavish devotion to Fedal. That’s rather destructive, if you think about it. For the moment, tennis is Djokovic World and it seems likely to stay that way for a while, health permitting. Journalists should make peace with that for now and have some fun. Someone else will come along soon enough. You can be sure of that. The question is when


Giles Says:

Helen Anthony. Joker will miss the next tourney you say. Are you sure?


Wog Boy Says:

@Helen Anthony,
You shouldn’t do that to Giles, he/she spent last 48 hours on internet checking your information, 48 hours of her/his precious unemployed time! That was cruel from you;)


jane Says:

“Djokovic made his 23rd straight QF, achieved a remarkable 5th AO title, is almost guaranteed to pass Rafa’s 141 weeks as #1″

fyi chrisford1, nole is now guaranteed to pass rafa’s 141 weeks at #1 because he can’t lose the #1 ranking before april 20th – even without picking up a racquet – which would put him at 142 weeks.


Wog Boy Says:

jane, if Nole can hold to #1 until after Wimbledon, I don’t see him losing #1 this year, but to be honest I would like that missing link, the FO, more then #1…if only Rafa isn’t so stingy..


Brando Says:

‘It has just been announced that Novak had an MRI on his ankle which showed an injury and will miss the next tournament’:

Wow. My reaction:

1. It certainly explains why he falling over and constantly looking at his ankles.

2. Probably also explains why he went ultra aggressive as in: ‘goes in i’ll take the winner, goes out fair enough since I cannot continue these 10 minutes per game routine with the ankle’.

Personally, I don’t consider him a cheat, nor have I- in all honesty- seen anyone call him or for the record others a cheat, since, let’s face it: there is no evidence for it.

Best of luck to him on recovering from the ankle.


Patson Says:

Huh, Nole has an injury ? Was it announced ?

I can’t find anything on the internet about it. His facebook page doesn’t say anything about it. Google search doesn’t bring up anything either.

This must be some old MRI scan news mistakenly believed to be recent news. Links please ?


mat4 Says:

I would like to add a few points, and I believe that I am qualified enough, having watched almost every Novak’s match since 2007.

For years, the press is creating an image of Novak that doesn’t correspond to reality. Most of the comments here — a few Novak fans excepted — are based on this false perception of Djokovic’s career and on double standards.

The first thing was that he had no stamina, but five setters he played before 2011 would show quite the contrary: against Stepanek, Federer, Baghdatis, etc. I could also mention that famous three setter in Madrid against Rafa, that lasted more that four hours.

So, everybody was “surprised” by his newly found endurance since 2011… without any reason. There was no changes in stamina — just a new racquet (that helped him a lot), an improved FH, some great form and a bit of luck. He just got back where he was at the beginning of 2008, having lost two years because of a sponsorship and a badly chosen coach.

Then, that he was a quitter. But the stats show that he was ranked 51st by his % of retirements from matches in 2012, and since then he didn’t retire from matches. He did it 11 times, twice at least as a junior.

You have one list here:

http://www.tennisabstract.com/reports/retirementReport.html

and another here:

http://ftw.usatoday.com/2014/03/roger-federer-retire-match

Just note that Roddick has more retirements than Djokovic…

Then, there is that question of gamesmanship, and obviously the definition is very murky and with a double measure, one for Djokovic, the other for Murray, or Nadal, or Federer.

But Novak is always the “bad guy”, so he, of course, he fakes fatigue… after 2h30 of a taxing match… And Andy is not complaining, just… just what? I watched his interview — and he was complaining, a lot, although carefully choosing his words.

But it doesn’t matter. For years, the media, helped by Nike and Addidas, have built a image of Rafa, Roger, Andy and Novak that doesn’t correspond to reality. And we continue to be influenced by this PR job, by this false image, asking question that are without logic.


bojana anel Says:

Thank You Mat4,that is the truth and only blind people can not see that.


courbon Says:

@ mat4: Great post.


Giles Says:

Joker fans spreading false rumours that his MRi scan revealed an injured ankle and hence withdrawal from his next tourney. Will these guys stop already. What injury? What scan? They are of course referring to some past faked ankle injury.And for the record and especially the poster from down under, I couldn’t care less if joker is going to miss the next tourney or the rest of the season.


jane Says:

mat4, you raise some relevant points; this one stands out for me: ” There was no changes in stamina ” i have tried to say this before, that 2011 didn’t “come out of nowhere” as is so often said to be the case. after nole’s match with stepanek at the us open in 2007 he was dubbed the “marathon man” at the ATP site. i guess what did change is his diet and that did help alleviate some of the difficulties he had on court, although he still doesn’t handle the heat with humidity very well.

wog boy, indeed. i agree.

as for this ankle mystery, i looked around and couldn’t find any statements or proof backing up this claim that he had an MRI or that he’s pulling out of his next tournament. like patson, i wonder if something was misinterpreted?


Giles Says:

Feb 8th 7.37 pm. Lol. Your comment backfired on you dude. Now all the joker fans are checking the Internet on the “injury” that never was. Blame your mate Helen Anthony!! LMAO


mat4 Says:

@jane:

I wrote that post because of some lines I read at Savannah’s blog. I like this blog, although I often don’t agree, but the writer is very open, says what she thinks and I respect that.

But in one of her last posts, I noticed more than a profound dislike of Novak. Savannah writes first that she didn’t watch the final, then… the best thing is to give a link, since I don’t want to misquote:

http://wwwsavannahsworld.blogspot.com/2015/02/the-rear-view-mirror-ausopen-2015.html

but…

Imagine that you’re at a changeover, very tired after two and a half hour of play, and you hear your “friend” telling his box that you’re a faker, and “that you do it all the time”.

Would you think that something is wrong in your friendship? How would you react? For my part, I would find all my energy left and blow him off the court. “And that’s what Novak did”, to use Novak’s usual words.

And, thinking about it, I remember Andy having confrontations with DelPo (who is one of the nicest guys on tour), was angry at Berdych (who just said “well done, Tomas”), faked an injury against Haas, yells all the time that his back is burning and that his thighs are “jelly” for the opponent to hear.

But since Novak knows Andy for years, he obviously doesn’t care (just like I don’t care — in the heat of the moment, when nerves are stretched to the limit, it is a way to fight against anxiousness), and he would probably like to save their relationship. The way he tried with Rafa, accepting to play with him in exos, even after Rafa changed his demeanour toward him in 2011.

The truth is that they were both very tired after the first two sets, and that the difference was made by a few points, at 3-3 and 4-3. Andy didn’t adjust to Novak’s changes, because he was, just like Novak, exhausted, and he made more errors because he plays flatter and wasn’t moving well enough, something that is quite understandable.

But the press goes on. We have here the Lendl case again: he fought hard and changed the way tennis is played to overcome the Borg, McEnroe, Connors of his time, and remained “Stone face”, “the man that came from the cold”, etc. Today, it is Novak’s turn: the man that broke the “duopoly”, that has barred the way to the top to a new favourite, can only be a villain.


Wog Boy Says:

mat4,
When you are on a roll, you are are on a roll, respect:))
I’ll buy you a drinik if it happenes to be that you are in Ireland, Serbia or Greece in August this year.
Ireland, Medieval Banquet, Bunratty Castle, County Clare …Serbia anytime anywhere …Greece, Corfu island (you know why, it is a pilgrim).
BTW, don’t forget Guča…only for hedonists, and I will be there too:

http://youtu.be/hdrGuvShTGw


Hippy Chick Says:

Wogboy i left you a post February 7th 6.52am/pm(cant remember which time)on the more people watched thread,just wondering if you had read it?as i hope we are still cool?….


Hippy Chick Says:

^Sorry it was am^….


Emily Says:

I remember watching Andy when he was just starting on the tour b/c I had heard so much about this new British wonder. He definitely had some growing pains in terms of court conduct, such as the confrontation w/ Delpo in Rome where they looked like they were about to get into a fight (which they both now are over). When he was w/ Brad Gilbert (not sure how old he was), I watched him scream directly at BG b/c he was losing and got no reaction from him. Maybe he thought that’s what Andy needed to do, though he lost that match anyway. Gilbert has had his back to this day and I don’t know if I would have been as forgiving after getting abused on court and then fired, though a cushy job at ESPN probably softened the blow.

I was surprised about Andy’s complaints during the SF since Berdych was clearly not talking to him, if you watch the video. Yes, there was tension, but it’s lucky that Andy pulled himself together, and maybe he needed the opportunity to express his frustration.

Anyway, my point being is that Novak got labelled a faker early on in his career, via retirements and various antics on court (I remember a Monfils match where he was throwing up, but ended up winning). You can argue for either side in terms of how they behave on court, but that doesn’t take away from their tennis or performance in the final. I don’t like the screaming on court or post-match accusations, but that is clearly what the press wanted from Andy. They’ve both come a long way since they started playing and I hope this doesn’t hover over their future matches. The fact is it came down to who handled the situation better tennis-wise, and that was Novak, and that’s why he now has 8 grand slams.


Wog Boy Says:

HC,

My apologies, I didn’t replay to your post but I wish you were with us (me) this last weekend, I bet you would enjoy it, food, music, relaxed atmosphere and sunny days…please forgive me:(


Daniel Says:

Guys, midia dis it’s part. Next time this two play the interest will immense for several reason and this “feud” bringing more heat to it. If you don’t take offense, is kind of great for tennis.

And for Djoko, I rather get the titles, records and millions than the love;-)


ANEL BOJANA Says:

Oh dear Wog Boy,You did bring a smile and tears to my eyes.Thank You.


Hippy Chick Says:

Wogboy ah theres nothing to forgive,food,music,and relaxation,sounds like my kind of weekend right up my street lol,the camp called the Mercian gathering in Coventry where hubby and i go the 1st weekend in September every year celerates the Autumn Equinox,i dont know how you do links on this forum,but if you look on you tube you will find it there,about the other stuff i will try to agree to disagree without getting on my high horse about it,im with Anel Bojana in that you made me smile and cry too ;-))….


jane Says:

“Everything has been made out to be much bigger than what is was,” said the number four Scot on Monday at the Rotterdam World Tennis.

“That happens all the time these days.

“In reality, you can go through periods of being very tired, then get better. You can get a second wind.

“As the finishing line gets closer, you can feel better. If Novak feels he has something to explain, I`d be pleased to speak with him, But I don`t feel he really needs to explain anything.”

Murray added that while media may try and beat up the story of his own anger at losing the Melbourne final for a fourth time into a feud, he and Djkoivic remain on excellent terms.

————–

http://zeenews.india.com/sports/tennis/ive-no-problem-with-djokovic-andy-murray_1544107.html


Sidney Says:

@mat4, agreed with your recent posts.

@hc, I noticed you’re one rafan who hasn’t posted any negative thoughts that I’ve seen against Novak after AO final. Cheers and respect from across the pond!

IW and Miami title defenses (and points) coming up.


Sidney Says:

@jane, thanks for that link. Great to know Andy’s thoughts a week after the AO final.

I’m sure some press people took it on the chin upon hearing Andy’s comments. But it won’t stop them! This is what some/most of them do for a living. It’s rough out there sometimes…


Yolita Says:

Very good posts, @mat4. I only disagree about Savannah. I don’t know how you can stomach her, she’s one of the most unfair bloggers around. But hey, she’s not worse than many journos. :D

She just states her opinions as facts and she has always hated Novak. This time she’s just repeating what she hears. She didn’t even watch the match, yet she piles on the hate. Ok, then.

Novak didn’t even take a MTO at the AO final, even his thumb was sorted out at the changeover. But he’s not allowed to look tired either. Anything and everything is wrong.

Ridiculous. But I still have a smile on my face after that fanstic win.

I remember in 2006 Federer picking Novak to say he was nothing special, plenty of youngsters more talented than him. And of course the obedient media ran with his opinions. I’m still laughing. LOL

Cheers, fellow Nole fans.

Let’s hope Novak keeps getting all this bad press from sore losers all year round. I’ll drink to that. :-)


mat4 Says:

@jane:

What Andy said doesn’t matter. The point is that media create a certain perception of a player, and with time, it just stays.

We see that even pundits, ex-players like Navratilova believes it.

But, at the same time, nobody understands the kind of pressure a player like Djokovic felt: if he didn’t make it, his family would become bankrupt: they had to borrow a lot of money to afford him good coaches, to pay for the racquets, the courts, and eventually to gamble everything by sending to the Niki Pilic academy.

The situation was completely different for Gael and for him: with the help of the FFT, Gael could afford to play as a junior three years longer than Novak, who had to become a pro at 16, to earn some money. The fact that his father, Srdjan, even accepted the LTA offer, spoke loudly about the difficulties the Djokovic faced until Novak first QF at RG.

The overwhelming feeling of responsibility for a family who has given him everything, more that that family could in reality afford, was the fuel of Novak’s initial success, but also a burden on his teenager’s psyche.

This emotional part of Novak’s career has been deeply obscured by journalists from a basically post-modern, alienated culture.

But it explains also Novak attachment not only to his family, but to his staff — a staff that has replaced his family: Vajda is still a part of it, Amanovic and Phil-Gritsch are there for years, and, while we can speak about Becker’s influence on Novak, it becomes clear that Novak gave Boris a lot in return — not only money: Boris looks leaner, younger, a different man. Novak not only rehabilitated him as a tennis expert — but helped him to find a sense of belonging as a human being. Just watch his last interviews at the AO, and compare the celebration at WB, when Novak huged Boris at the end, and after the AO win, when he greeted him first.

Djokovic, just like Nadal (but for very different reasons), although very succesfull, is a deeply tragic character. He came from nowhere, he is changing tennis, he is deeply liked by the persons who know him, but he will be remembered not for his accomplishments, but for his crises and his imperfections — the stones have already been thrown, by those who believe that they are without sins.


mat4 Says:

@Yolita:

I always write very good posts. You should read me in French: I write very better posts :-)

Savannah is entitled to his opinions. And, yes, basically she’s a hater — not only of Novak, but of Bouchard too, now, as I could see. But there are so few good tennis blogs left: Tignor, Zemek… Huan Hose doesn’t write any more — or does he? He was the best tennis writer in the last few years. And a Novak fan, of course.


jane Says:

mat4, i have to agree with yolita about that blog. how can a person make such biased comments without having even watched the match!?

i know what you mean about the media; it’s definitely able to skew perceptions. but i am still glad andy has pointed out that the media makes things much worse than they actually are.


mat4 Says:

@jane:

Did you watched Andy’s interview? He is not a child any more, and he knew perfectly what would be the outcome. Just compare this with Novak’s own answer to such provocs.

“Q. Is it a legitimate tactic to maybe make your opponent think you’re injured and then come back flying?

ANDY MURRAY: No, it’s not legitimate. Like I have no idea what the issue was. He obviously looked like he was in quite a bad way at the beginning of the third set and came back unbelievable at the end of that set. Then obviously the way he was hitting the ball in the fourth and moving was impressive. So, yeah, I don’t know exactly what the issue was for him.

Q. Do you think it was a deliberate element to it? At the start of the second and third, looked like he was buckling under.

ANDY MURRAY: I don’t know. I don’t know. I have no idea. I mean, it’s obviously what he thinks. I would hope that that wouldn’t be the case. But, yeah, if it was cramp, how he recovered from it, that’s a tough thing to recover from and play as well as he did at the end.”

Now Novak:

“Q. Even if you know him since you are both 11 years old, he said he was distracted by you limping or having a problem to the hand or foot. Should it happen between two people who know each other so well?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, I’m not going to talk bad things about him in the press or find any excuses or something like this. In the match like this a lot of emotions go through, a lot of tension. It’s not easy to keep the concentration 100% all the way through.”

Yes, of course, Andy changed his mind, it was all said after a very painful loss, and, anyway, Novak won so no hard feeling.


jane Says:

i thought in both cases the journalists were trying to goad the players into saying things that would blow up into a “story” when the story should have been the achievements. the same happened to berdych after their match. just have a look at the video, starting at 1:20; it’s clearly a UK journalist who brings it up, and then again at 3:10. berdych says “really guys, don’t try to make any big deal about it…”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LLXm_KMG-Tk


Hippy Chick Says:

Sidney @February 9th 9.27pm,Murrays my second favorite so i was still bitter about him losing 4 finals,and 3 to the same player,but my rants were more about what he did rather than Novak,Novak was the better player and won it fair and square,its over now so ive moved on to watching Andy in Rotterdam , but i will say that i dont share the enthuiasm that some people do about this rivalry though anymore which has become one sided of late,so i hope they are on the same side of some draws,so they cant meet in finals for a while at least….


calmdownplease Says:

As both Andy and Djokovic have appeared to have gotten over this, it might be about time for some of the posters here to do the same, eh?


Hippy Chick Says:

CDP exactly,im looking forward to watching Andy in Rotterdam you?….


mat4 Says:

jane wrote:

“i thought in both cases the journalists were trying to goad the players into saying things that would blow up into a “story””

That’s the point. It is not about the players — it is about the “script”. The “script” makes Savannah write her biased assessment of the final (without watching, she just “knew it”). And when Novak’s career will be over, the “script” will remain.


calmdownplease Says:

@HC

But of course Dear!
Rotterdam seems esp rocking actually, glad Dimitrov squeeked through too, so many good players = some great matches on the rise.
Bar Andy I was a bit bored by the AO.


calmdownplease Says:

But HC will you please stop saying that Andy is your `2nd fav but you are bored with the one sided head to head with Djokovic`
You said it a million times!
Anyway 2015 is a new year
And it will BE A NEW YEAR
Of that I have no doubt :)


Hippy Chick Says:

CDP OK fair enough,but i stand by both,and about them not been on opposite sides of draws for a while,but agree enoughs enough,i hope Andy and Rafa both bag a GS this year….


calmdownplease Says:

I know you do, youve said it on many, many occasions.
Andy need not fear Novak on grass at any stage of an event.
Although clearly he is still not quite fit/mentally strong enough to hang with him over 5, right now.
I’m interested to see how Rafa will cope over clay however.
He is always injured now &
He was lucky in Madrid against Nishi, and loses in the best of 3 matches against Novak and others too.
I think he still fav for RG but it will be probably be his hardest fought defence ever.
(Which is good for Andy even with the extra week)


Hippy Chick Says:

CDP the Rafas also done pretty well at the USO in recent years too winning it twice,although its the most open of all the GS,Wimbedon even though Rafa has done crap the last three years,he still has two titles from five finals,so i wouldnt completely write him off there,and an extra week might benifit him you never know,even though he and Novak have won it more i think Andys game is better suited to grass than either of those,and it would be Federers best chance of another GS,Rafa winning RG isnt a sure thing as hes becoming less dominant by the law of averages,he will still be the favorite,but wont necassarily win it,although time will tell….


calmdownplease Says:

I’d be surprised if Rafa won USO after losing RG but it would certainly be an incentivising for him to do so if such a thing did happen.
All of the upcoming slams are more open
Cant see Roger winning another unless the stars align in some uber unlikely (yet on paper possible) way.
I mean come on now, even Novak and Andy are starting to look a bit long in the tooth.


Hippy Chick Says:

CDP Andy and Novak are starting to look a bit long in the tooth,yes too right Novak is the number 1 player and the most consistent and best when it comes to making finals,but hasnt dominated by winning the GS,it was 18 months between winning AO in 2013 and Win 2014,and he didnt win either HC GS last year which is his best surface,he is still the most consistent,but not necassarily the most dominant,and with Andy its now nearly two years since he won Wimbledon….


calmdownplease Says:

The missing element of all of this is….Andy
There is a window for him to grab the tournament by the scruff of the neck and have his `moment` which should last for a couple of years
But its just been drama, drama, drama with this dude
It’s frustrating, because I think his time to rack em up will be over soon.
Still I think he could win one even 5 years from now because that’s how the tour rolls nowadays.
It’s getting older.


calmdownplease Says:

And no despite what certain people have said here
Novak hasn’t looked dominant since 11 and Nadal since 13.
Although both could be again, so it’s all to play for


Emily Says:

To be fair, Nadal barely had a 2014 season and he still made two grand slam finals and won another FO. That puts him second behind Novak if we’re looking at performance in grand slams.

It should be interesting to see what Rafa can do during the clay season, and though people always say his reign will end soon, he’s still the favorite at Roland Garros.


Daniel Says:

Emily indeed, two things I am very interesting come RG, if Nadal will win it again and how will he react if he doesn’t?! He will be 29 during RG this year entering a “new” phase in his career.
Also his main concern probably is having a year injury free as last year he was plagued by 3 different ones: back, wrist and than appendix. Some say his back is not fully 100% recovered. One of my commenters in Brazil who was a former tennis players (Fernando Meligenni) during AO pre Berdych match said last time he spoke with Carlos Costa he was still not 100%.
But he have to see the silver lining, everybody thought the knees would be the doom of him and last years seems he wasn’t bother by it anymore. Back pain for old tennis players is just part of it, they will never really go away.


Emily Says:

I can believe he wasn’t 100% after that bizarre Berdych match. It’s strange that he played so well against Anderson and then couldn’t get his game together in the next round.

Because of his injuries and style of gameplay, Rafa is unfortunately an older 29 then Novak or Andy will be. I don’t think he’s going to give in to his age w/o a fight, however, it’s just not in his nature.

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