Djokovic looking sharp in comeback

By: AP January 10,2018 - 09:36 PM

MELBOURNE, Australia — Novak Djokovic stopped quickly, abruptly changed directions and stabbed at a full-stretch volley that whizzed past Dominic Thiem for a winner.

He then turned and beamed. Djokovic is back after the longest injury layoff of his career and he’s clearly enjoying himself on the court again.

Wearing a compression sleeve on his right arm to protect his troublesome elbow, Djokovic dominated the fifth-ranked Thiem 6-1, 6-4 on Wednesday in an exhibition match at the Kooyong Classic, a key tune-up event for next week’s Australian Open.

Still smiling afterward, Djokovic said he’d had doubts whether he’d be ready to play the first Grand Slam of the year, but the win over Thiem was a major confidence boost.

“Obviously, I was waiting for this moment for six months to get out on the court and play a match,” he said. “Also, I got a great opponent today, the No. 5 in the world, so it was a fantastic test for me to see where I am.”

Djokovic, who had been sidelined with the elbow injury since a quarterfinal loss at Wimbledon last year, initially planned to play in an exhibition event in Abu Dhabi and then a tournament in Qatar to start the season, but withdrew from both due to lingering pain in his elbow.

He still traveled to Melbourne hoping to be fit to play in the Australian Open, where he’s won six of his 12 career Grand Slam titles. Despite playing pain-free on Wednesday, he said he’s still taking it “day by day.”

“I don’t want to be over-confident,” he said. “Obviously, I’m very, very happy with the way it went today, but I don’t want to say it’s 100 percent. I’ll say that when I start a tournament and when I get to actually feel that it’s 100 percent. For now, I’m in the (Australian Open) and let’s hope with God’s grace that everything will be fine in the next five days.”

Subscribe to our regional newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.
Read Next

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of Cebudailynews. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

TAGS: comeback, Djokovic, LOOKING, sharp

Subscribe to our regional newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and
acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.