Danii Medvedev got soundly beaten by an injury-hampered performance by Novak Djokovic at the Adelaide International semi-final. The top seed took apart his Russian counterpart in 6-3, 6-4 within 90 minutes but the moment in the match most talked about was one where eagle-eyed viewers seem to have caught Medvedev mocking Djokovic.
During the first set, Djokovic took a medical timeout. The timeout was to stretch out his hamstring and involved the physio when the set was at 5-2. The Serbian later returned to the court but was clearly seen clutching his hamstrings. Then in the second set, once Djokovic recovered and regained control of the match, there was a moment where Medvedev was unable to break the top seed. The Russian, who is famous for moments of petulance on the court, appeared to clutch his hamstring while looking at Djokovic and grinning.
Here’s to you, 33 🙌@DjokerNole defeats Daniil Medvedev 6-3 6-4 to stretch his winning streak in Australia to 33! #AdelaideTennis pic.twitter.com/1OqYbqEbAN
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) January 7, 2023
Commentator Pete Odgers said: “I don’t know whether he was mocking Djokovic there or he has an issue himself. Might be a little bit of a mock, what do you think Dom?” And his co-commentator added then added, “Got a little wry smile on his face.”
Medvedev ended up losing the match soon afterwards, but was hopeful of how he would fare in the future against Djokovic and Nadal.
“You have to believe in yourself,” Medvedev said. “I honestly say that before every match. “Every time I play them (Djokovic and Rafael Nadal), before the match the only thought is I have to win, I have to try my best to win. I managed to do it. Rafa I think I beat only once, but still I managed to do it. I had some tough matches against him. Against Novak I won a Slam.”
Since beating Djokovic for the 2021 US Open title, the 26-year-old has lost to the Serb three times. This Australian Open will see Djokovic make a return to the first Slam of the year, after being disbarred from attending the tournament thanks to his vaccination status.