Djokovic Loses in a Grand Slam!

Well, there ya go. It had to happen eventually. They say hindsight is always 20/20 and although I thought Djokovic’s break after the French Open would be long enough I think the mental effort that went into completing the Djoker slam took its toll on Djokovic.

He was clearly a burnt out and spent force against Querrey. Not that Querrey didn’t play his part. He played the match of his life and I want to congratulate him. His serving, in particular, was superb.

He kept pounding down aces which didn’t help Djokovic’s cause. But in the end, there is no doubt whatsoever that Djokovic was way off his best and burnt out. In the fourth set, despite more rain interruptions and a couple of bad calls when he was serving for the set he bravely fought on.

It was like a man refusing to accept his fate. As a fan, it was a brutal set to watch because Djokovic kept finding a way to escape his fate and yet couldn’t ultimately escape it. Definitely one of the toughest sets I’ve watched as a fan.

The players came back today and Djokovic did exactly what was needed which was to get the early break and then he got the double break as well to take a 4-0 lead after which the rain started again.

Djokovic eventually wrapped up the third set 6-3 after losing one of the breaks. At the beginning of the fourth set, he had several break chances in Querrey’s first two service games which he uncharacteristically squandered.

He then faced break points on his own serve which he somehow saved. At times the tennis was just shocking. Djokovic was playing some of the worst tennis I have seen from him in ages but Querrey was too nervous to take advantage.

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After a monumental struggle, Djokovic eventually took advantage of a break opportunity and served for the fourth set at 5-4. On the first two points, he then got wrong calls but he had no more challenges left.

You have to say that was very unlucky to not get one but two consecutive bad calls on two very important points. If Djokovic holds serve there and it goes to a fifth set Querrey would have gotten even more nervous.

You would think Djokovic wins from there on but eventually, your luck runs out I suppose. Earlier in the fourth set, there was another rain break and then at 5-6 when Djokovic must serve to stay in the match there comes yet another rain break.

I really wish they would have completed this match on the center court because the match had already been postponed a day due to rain. What a fucking mess. It was one of those matches that as a player you want to forget as soon as possible.

Everything seemed to be against Djokovic. When they came back on court Djokovic held serve to force the tiebreak. He got the mini break in the tiebreak as well but eventually he just couldn’t thwart his fate anymore.

He made a real mess of things there towards the end of the tiebreak and eventually pulled a forehand wide to lose 6-7(6), 1-6, 6-3, 6-7(5). It was a very frustrating and difficult match to watch as a fan and in the end, I was just glad it was over.

I’m irritated that they didn’t move the match to center court where Djokovic probably would have won, with the bad calls when Djokovic was serving for the fourth set, and with the countless number of rain breaks.

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It feels like there was some kind of conspiracy going on but he will be back to win this title again. Of that, you can be 100% certain. He wouldn’t have liked the way this whole thing played out which will make him even more determined.

Let Murray or Federer have their day in the sun again. It is not going to be particularly satisfying for either of them knowing that neither of them could beat Djokovic in their last four slams meetings(five in the case of Murray).

In the end, as I said in my last post it was all about the French Open this year. That was the one Djokovic wanted more than anything and he proved legions of critics wrong by winning it. Everything after that was just a bonus.

The fact that he won two matches at Wimbledon and surpassed Laver’s open era record of 29 consecutive slam match wins is a big bonus. Even before Djokovic won the French Open I knew that if he did, it might cost him at Wimbledon.

But that was always going to be a price I was willing to pay as a fan as long as he could finally put the French Open burden to bed. That was a huge one to tick off and will only help him to play with more freedom in the future.

Djokovic has also made it public that he won’t be playing the next round of Davis Cup. There is no doubt now that finally putting the French Open to bed took a big emotional toll on him and that is fully understandable.

He is now going to take some more time off to make sure he comes back strong and finish the year on a high. He still has an opportunity to make this a third three-slam year and win a third US Open.

  • The Djoker Slam Has Been Under-Hyped by the Media

Some people have suggested that this is now a Djokovic blog which I am fine with since the biased western media has been ignoring Djokovic’s achievements to a large extent. Djokovic comes from an eastern European country which means they view him as an outsider and tend to ignore him.

And the more they ignore him the more I will hype him. So if you don’t like it then blame westerners for ignoring Djokovic or blame yourself. Djokovic deserves immense praise for what he is achieving in tennis on merit alone and therefore I will give it to him.

I don’t care if that means there isn’t a single person commenting or reading my blog. Djokovic has done something neither Federer nor Nadal could ever do by winning four consecutive slams and that is now something which will never change.

In the last year or so Djokovic has played himself firmly into the record books and the GOAT debate and I can’t wait to see it continue. This loss is just a natural consequence of constant winning and overcoming challenges.

He will resume soon where he left off. This kind of mistreatment from the west is something Djokovic is used to which he uses to motivate himself. He will only be more determined to dominate now.

Djokovic can’t win the calendar slam anymore this year but winning six slams in a row is just ridiculous if you think about it. The fact that he won four in a row is an astonishing achievement and the fact that he won the most consecutive slam matches in the open era is another astonishing achievement.

He doesn’t have to take a back seat when it comes to Federer and Nadal. He now has records of his own which Federer and Nadal will never accomplish. And there is still plenty of time left to set more records.

Like I said, this is just a rest stop. I expect a big onslaught from him toward the end of the year. The Djoker slam was a stunning achievement but the downside of it(if something like that has a downside) is that it had to end.

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And since the French Open had been such a cursed slam for Djokovic winning it was always going to take an emotional toll. Especially since it would mean completing the very impressive Djoker slam at the same time.

So from a fan’s perspective, I have no regrets whatsoever. I was more upset about the circumstances surrounding this loss and just because I didn’t want to see such an extraordinary run end. That is just natural.

But since the French Open/Wimbledon last year when I became a serious Djokovic fan it has been a dream run. Certainly the most rewarding time as a tennis fan I have ever experienced.

Back in 1999/2000 when I was an Agassi fan Agassi was denied the Agassi slam in a devastating performance by Sampras at Wimbledon so it is nice to finally get to experience that as a fan.

Who would have thought last year after Djokovic lost in the French Open final that he would go on a historic run of winning four consecutive slams? First, he put the semi-cursed US Open slam to bed and then the big one at the French.

Over a period of twelve months, he had gone from a player who had won eight slams without the career slam to someone who is now in the top tier of GOAT candidates. An extraordinary achievement.

In many ways, he is now ahead of Federer and Nadal. Not only does he lead them in the head-to-head meetings but he has achieved something neither of them could by winning a personal slam.

I really can’t wait to see what the future holds for him. He has now laid the ideal platform from where he can attempt to become the undisputed GOAT.

  • Can Federer Take Advantage of the Situation?

Federer plays Johnson next after Johnson defeated Dimitrov in four sets. His draw really just keeps getting better. The big question is now whether Federer can take advantage of Djokovic’s loss and go on to win #18 here.

This is the opportunity he has been waiting for, but did he leave it too late? He still lacks match play and he can only avoid difficult opponents for so long. If he wins he will play Cilic or Nishikori.

Those are still easy for a quarterfinal opponent especially if it is Nishikori but then there is a good possibility that Federer will face Raonic. But judging by his draw so far he will probably get Goffin who would lose on purpose just so Federer can have a shot at winning another Wimbledon title.

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You would think at least in the final Federer would face Murray if he makes it that far but there is no guarantee of that either. Murray could play Kyrgios in the next round who can beat anyone on a good day.

This is a rare opportunity for Federer to finally bag #18 with the exit of Djokovic but the fact that he was injured for a big part of this year doesn’t help his cause. Federer has been steadily improving since his first round but you never know when lack of match practice can catch up with you.

And if he has to go through Raonic and Murray that will still be a tough ask at this stage. I wouldn’t be surprised if it is a Murray vs Raonic final but we will see how the draw plays out. You certainly can’t count Federer out.

  • Elsewhere in the Draw

Murray played again today and won in straight sets over Millman in his so far cakewalk draw. But next, he will get the winner of Kyrgios or Lopez who are currently tied at a set all. Tomic also made the fourth round with a straight-set win over Bautista Agut.

Like I said before, he can be dangerous on grass and plays the winner of Pouille and Del Potro where Pouille leads 6-7(4), 7-6(6), 7-5. It’s tough to call a winner there yet but Tomic can easily make quarters.

I am hoping Del Potro can continue his run but I am not holding out too much hope of that happening. Del Potro won’t win the tournament so I don’t care much about who wins the title now.

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That doesn’t mean I will lose interest. I am a tennis fan after all. I will certainly be interested in finding out how this concludes. More so than Federer perhaps this is the chance Murray has been waiting for.

He has been the runner-up in the last two slams and with Lendl back in his corner this is an excellent opportunity for him to finally win another slam. I think he probably has to be the favorite now.

After that Raonic and then Federer. Federer is more like a dangerous dark horse I think because in the end there is no substitude for match play. But anything can still happen. This is now quite open which makes things interesting!

  • Highlights

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Posted in Grand Slams, Wimbledon.

14 Comments

  1. I just want to point out that Nole slam, which is mostly undervalued in big media, includes winning 2nd players on the ATP list (Federer was 2nd on the ATP list when Nole won Wimbledon and US Open, while Murray was 2nd on the ATP list when Nole won Australian and French Open). All 4 finals that he won were extraordinary achievement. I am sure that he will recover from this loss quickly and get ready for Rio.

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    Ru-an Reply:

    Everything about Djokovic is undervalued by the big media. He had the most wins over top 10 opponents in a year by far last year at 31 when people were whining about a so-called weak era and he is 5 times on the list for most top 10 wins per season which is the most for anyone. He is also only second to Borg when it comes to win rate over top 10 opponents.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Era_tennis_records_%E2%80%93_men%27s_singles

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  2. I feel similarly. As a fan watching the match was a brutal experience, but after it was over, there was a bit of relief. People treated the calendar (and golden) slam as though it was actually a statistical likelihood, which is just ridiculous. This loss actually helped me even better appreciate the achievement of 4 consecutive slams in again seeing how just one off day can derail it.

    Hopefully, aside from the added determination, the significant rest will benefit him going into a brutal hard court season. For once he should have fresher legs than Murray and I’m hoping he can see better results in Canada and, more importantly to me, Cincinatti. I think getting a Cincinnati title is big for his resume, in standing alone as having won every masters. It almost (almost) means more to me than the olympics.

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    Ru-an Reply:

    Agree Robles. The calendar slam was unrealistic with the benefit of hindsight. Four slams in a row are ridiculous enough as it is. Six in a row is absurd. I’d prefer Cincy over Olympics myself. Olympics is a joke to me. Winning all the masters would be another huge achievement that would improve Nole’s GOAT claim.

    Another thing Fedal could not achieve and in all likelihood never will. Djokovic is more complete than either of them and winning all the masters would be more proof of that. He doesn’t have any serious flaws like being dependent on one surface or being owned by his main rival. That is the most important thing in the GOAT debate.

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  3. Wonder why there is not many comments…

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    Ru-an Reply:

    Strange, isn’t it? Probably because Djokovic is from an eastern European country and is viewed as the outsider. It’s a shame. These people don’t know what they are missing.

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  4. Very great writeup Ruan. You nailed it. You said every everything the way i felt it. About the western media i remember after the french final one british media used the title,” murray lost to djocovic in french open final” WHAT THE FUC…ARE THEY TALKING ABOUT? Nole just won fourth slam in a row, a tennis record to happen after a fac…ng 50 years and this is what they have for the title? Do they need to mentin murray in the article let alone the title. Total crap and I was upset and didnt read through the details of it. The titles used by a lot of those western medias was stupid that it all fails to describe the win’s historic moment in tennis. Ruan did you remember any stupid title for yourself?

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  5. Maybe the country has nothing to do with it. I don’t care from which country he is from, I don’t really like him, never did. All the drama with his parents, his behavior, imitating other players, the gluten, the oxygen tank and so on when he was younger. People didn’t like that, and now he is trying so hard to get the love Nadal and Federer get from fans and people watching with his stupid dance routines with ball kids, hearts in the sand and eating grass.

    Yeah, he plays unbelievable, wins everything and then some. Who cares if you don’t like the guy. Who cares about GOAT or head to head, comparing different eras, weak eras, age difference, peak years and so on.

    In the end people cheer for the one they like, not necessarily the best, maybe this coincided with Nadal and Federer when they were on top. I’d rather watch Hewitt play his heart out than Djokovic destroy any player on tour.

    Nadal, Federer and Djokovic are all 3 probably the best players ever, in no particular order. Everyone of these three has records the other 2 will never break, may it be 9 French, 6 Aussie, 7 Wimby, 4 Majors in a row, 5 Wimby and 5 USO in a row, Masters tiltles, you name it.

    In my opinion there is no GOAT, it’s just plain silly. The discussion is endless, who sets the rules for the goat debate ? Who can honestly compare all these achievements from all the greats from the last 50 years or so when everything from surface, balls, raquets, fitness, size of player changes constantly ?

    Anyway, thats just my 2 cents on this. I like Federer because of his grace, style of play. He plays fast, uses every shot in his arsenal, comes to the net. What I don’t like is watching a match for 5 hours with endless baseline ralleys. I can’t stand drama queens like Kyrgios or Zverev. If I can’t stand a guy I can’t watch him.

    Back to Nole. I don’t like him, but I don’t hate him. I watch some of his matches because he is the best right now, but I don’t care how many slams he wins or if you call him the GOAT. I watch tennis to be entertained. And for me personally Federer is more entertaining than Djokovic, I don’t really care who wins more. For me Fed will always be better, simply because I like him better.
    I just don’t get the hate. Haters gonna hate like Taylor Swift says, but I don’t go online every time Rafa or Nole loses and spread the hate. Makes me sick looking at the atp website or facebook seeing all the hate all these 3 get every time they lose. I would have loved to see Roger and Nole play in the semis, the chance that Roger would have won is always slim to none these days, but a small chance is always there, I just love their matches and Fedal matches.

    In that sense, everybody just chill a little bit, your favourite player is still great or a goat candidate and so on.
    By the way, I am from Austria, so go Dominic Thiem for world domination :-)

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Yup, I agree. The hate is just stupid. See I don’t have any problem with the fact that you don’t like Djokovic. What the hell does it matter? I only have a problem with biased Fedfans coming here and telling me that Federer is a better person or better player simply because they like him more. If anything he is less likable and a worse player for that reason.

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    Mardn Reply:

    I’m not telling you he is better, I’m telling you he is for me. And don’t tell me you’re not biased yourself. I’ve been coming here for years off and on and now you’re the unbiased saint who never bashed Nadal ? Everyone is biased, that was my whole point. You’ve been calling Fed the Goat for years, now it’s Djokovic, maybe it will be someone else in the Future.
    I said i like Fed and his style of play more than Djokovic, shoot me. I never said Fed is the better person ot the better player in general, he is for me for the mentioned reasons. I don’t care if you think Djokovic is better or will win more, it doesn’t change the fact that for me Feds matches are more enjoyable and more entertaining. Winning most matches and titles or being “the best” isn’t my main goal in watching Tennis.

    Before Fed i watched Agassi, he wasn’t the best, but he was for me, cause I loved watching him. Beeing loved by fans and being the best can mean different things for different people, live with it.

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    Ru-an Reply:

    But I wasn’t talking about you? I think you are being a little over-sensitive. And I never denied my bias. In fact, if you have come here often like you claim you would know I am one of the few tennis journalists who admit their bias. Why would I deny it?

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    balthazar Reply:

    Hey, Ru-an. It’s been a while since I’ve commented. I agree with most everything Mardn has stated. I’ve been a die-hard Fed fan from the beginning, and always will be, preferring his style of play and personality over Novak’s. That said, I tip my hat to the great Serbian champion. Four Majors in a row was a stupendous feat.

    All the best.

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    Ru-an Reply:

    Hi, Balthazar. Nice to hear from you. I respect the fact that you are a prefer Federer because you respect Novak. I never had a problem with anyone who doesn’t like him as long as they respected his achievements.

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  6. Sam Querrey is my new favorite player……for a day or two. GO FEDERER!!!!! The true GOAT. Ruan, it’s just me, being me. Happy 4th of July all you USA folks.

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