Novak Djokovic defeats Taylor Fritz in five-set epic as followers are advised to go away courtroom at Australian Open

Crowds had been advised to go away the stadium because the match carried on previous midnight and Melbourne’s five-day lockdown got here into power.

Whereas the 33-year-old Djokovic had sufficient within the tank to defeat world No. 31 Fritz, the world No. 1 admitted after the match that he might not have the ability to recuperate from the stomach harm he sustained earlier than going through Milos Raonic within the subsequent spherical on Sunday.

“Proper now, I do know it is a tear … I do not know if I will handle to recuperate from that in lower than two days,” Djokovic mentioned of the harm that hampered his motion within the second half of the match.

“I do not know if I’ll step out onto the courtroom or not. I am very pleased with this achievement tonight, let’s have a look at what occurs tomorrow.”

Djokovic receives treatment during his third-round game.

Djokovic marched right into a two-set lead in opposition to the big-serving Fritz earlier than the momentum of the match shifted.

The Serbian needed to go away the courtroom for therapy as 23-year-old Fritz took the following two units to degree the competition.

However Djokovic summoned sufficient energy to take the ultimate set and let loose a roar of aid when he transformed a match level.

“That is undoubtedly probably the most particular wins in my life, it would not matter what spherical it’s and who it’s in opposition to, underneath these sort of circumstances to tug this via is unquestionably one thing I will bear in mind ceaselessly,” he added in his post-game interview.

Djokovic lets out a celebratory roar as he defeats Fritz.

The second five-set encounter of the day after Dominic Thiem’s comeback victory in opposition to Nick Kyrgios, Djokovic and Fritz accomplished the sport in an empty Rod Laver Area as spectators had been pressured to go away forward of the Melbourne quarantine.

The state of Victoria is locking down from Saturday in a bid to curb the unfold of a extra contagious virus variant, though the Australian Open has been allowed to proceed within the absence of followers.

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