A couple of weeks after experiencing the defeat in the 2020 Roland Garros final against Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic appeared at the ATP 500 in Vienna. Novak traveled to the Austrian capital for the first time since 2007, taking on Filip Krajinovic in the opening round.
Novak and Filip have been training together for years, and the younger player knew how to take advantage of it and challenge the best player in the world. Krajinovic took a 5-3 lead in the first set and had a set point at 6-5 in the tie break before Djokovic prevailed 7-6 6-3 in just under two hours.
Praising his compatriot, Djokovic admitted that Krajinovic was the better player in the first set, wasting that set point and missing an easy smash at 6-6. It was a high level clash with more winners than unforced errors by both.
Djokovic lost serve twice and grabbed four breaks from 11 chances, overcoming that deficit and not looking back in the second set. The world number 1 worked hard and fended off two break chances with his winners, so that his name appeared on the scoreboard.
Novak held the lead with an ace down the T-line in game three and secured the first break with a volley winner at the net a few minutes later for 3-1. Filip rallied with a break at 15 in game five to pick up momentum and produced another return game at 3-3 with a backhand winner down the line.
Both players comfortably held games 11 and 12 to reach the tie break. Filip grabbed a set point with a game winner at 5-5 and looked poised to carve out the lead. Novak saved it and scored three straight points to close the break at 7-6 when Krajinovic hit a forehand error in the 71st minute.
Robson talks about Djokovic
“I think Novak Djokovic has got a huge amount of fans,” Robson told Tennis365 at a Play Your Way To Wimbledon event. “Every time I commentate on one of his matches, my Twitter blows up because there are so many people who are die hard fans of his.
They are committed. I do feel like he has a lot of fans. Compared to Nadal and Federer, they might not be as vocal in stadiums, but people just know them better from years and years of watching them. I feel Djokovic gets a lot of credit. He is probably going to end up as the greatest of all-time, so he deserves a lot more respect”.