“Not an Ideal Atmosphere”: Novak Djokovic Did Not Address the Crowd After US Open 2021 R1 Victory

Published 08/31/2021, 11:06 PM EDT
Aug 31, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Novak Djokovic of Serbia wipes his face between points against Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune of Denmark (not pictured) on day two of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


For the first time in a long while, Serbian World No.1 Novak Djokovic did not address the crowd after winning his opening-round match. Coincidentally, he also skipped his iconic fans’ celebrations when 100% crowd capacity came to see him play at the US Open 2021. As a result, the 34-year-old got a bitter-sweet start to his Calendar Slam campaign.

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Chiefly, it was not the fans rooting for his opponent, but their jeers towards him, that made him skip the monumental pose in New York. However, Djokovic stated after the match that although it was “not an ideal atmosphere” for him, he has “learned how to handle it.”

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Lamentably, the Serbian World No.1 also mentioned how the crowd booed him while many believe they cheered for his opponent, 18-year-old qualifier Holger Rune. Besides, the teenager did deserve all the praise.

Aug 31, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune of Denmark suffers from cramps against Novak Djokovic of Serbia in a first round match on day two of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

From here on, Djokovic might be on a singular path to attain the over 50-year-old unbroken record of a Calendar Slam. Yet, in the coming days, we might also see the Serb making up with the New York crowd.

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Novak Djokovic and Holger Rune battle at the US Open 2021

Fascinatingly, the teenage sensation, Rune from Denmark, got his dream come true matchup in the opening round of this year’s US Open. He took on his idol, Djokovic, inside the Arthur Ashe Stadium in Flushing Meadows.

While not many expected it to be a thriller, the inspired Rune proved them wrong. Eventually, he even stole a set from the number one player in the world.

Aug 31, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Novak Djokovic of Serbia, right, greets Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune of Denmark after a first round match on day two of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Naturally, the New York fans enjoyed the young teenager putting his heart out for them on the court. And so, even they cheered for him ferociously. Although according to Djokovic, it wasn’t all cheers for Rune, but some booing of him too.

Ultimately, after the second set, the Danish professional started getting cramps and could not keep up with the fight. Because of this, Djokovic offered him a game in the fourth set so he does not go home with a bagel. The final score: 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-2, 6-1.

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In the second round, Djokovic will take on Tallon Griekspoor for the first time in his professional career. On meeting him, the Serb said that while he doesn’t know a lot about his opponent, he does know about the Arthur Ashe court.

To sum up, the Calendar Slam campaign will require everything from Djokovic. Let’s see what the Serb will bring in his next match.

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Do you think he will win the US Open 2021 title?

Watch this story: A Look Inside Novak Djokovic’s $10 Million Mansion in Spain

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Purav Joshi

1118 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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