World Number three Roger Federer experienced a one-sided defeat against his longtime foe, Novak Djokovic, in the semi-finals of the Australian Open 2020. His journey to the Melbourne semifinals has been a turbulent one. He saved a string of seven match points in the quarters and was just two points away from getting eliminated in the third round of Aussie Open.
However, before beginning his match against Novak, Roger knew that his chances to win on Thursday were slim. Also, he canceled his practice sessions on the day before and he wasn’t feeling at his best. All the fuss was due to his groin injury, which was bothering him since his Tuesday’s match against Tennys Sandgren.
Federer could have used tape to protect his groin pain and play to his maximum, but he later realized that tape wouldn’t overcome the Djokovic’s longevity on the court.
“Today we postponed practice for another three hours. Most of all, I had to find out whether I should play with/ without tape. Ultimately, I said I’d rather not. If it hurts, tape won’t help me either. And I’d rather really feel what the problem would be if it came,” Roger Federer told Tages-Anzeiger.
“I was not able to serve it out” – Roger Federer
In his 50th match against Djokovic, Federer failed to close out the opening set at 5-3. Before that, the Swiss led by 4-1, and 40-0* and later, Djokovic won the first set 7-6(1).
The choking by Federer in the first set of the Melbourne semifinals wasn’t as miserable as his two Wimbledon championship points’ evaporation. However, some clutch tennis from Federer could have avoided a one-sided loss.
“I was playing with nothing to lose. I was just trying to take big cuts at the ball, trying to keep the rallies to a minimum, make sure I keep him off guard, mix it up as much as I can. I returned really well in the beginning. Got some really good connections going. Unfortunately, I was not able to serve it out. To be honest, I feel like I should have found a way to do that, but wasn’t able to,” he said.