Australian Open: I misconducted myself verbally, says Novak Djokovic

Updated: Jan 20, 2019, 08:59 IST | AFP

Novak Djokovic regrets losing temper after being agitated by floodlights and crowd during his 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 6-0 Round Three win over Shapovalov

Australian Open: I misconducted myself verbally, says Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic returns to Serbia’s Denis Shapovalov during a third round match at Melbourne yesterday. Pic/Getty Images

Top seed Novak Djokovic admitted he should have "known better" than to let a floodlight row get to him after copping a code violation during a mini-meltdown in the Australian Open on Saturday.

The Serb angrily blamed floodlights for dropping a tournament set for the first time as he beat Denis Shapovalov 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 6-0 in the third round. He seethed when leading 3-0 in the third set against the 25th-seeded Canadian when the powerful lights blazed on all around Rod Laver Arena — in broad daylight.

An incandescent Djokovic lost his focus, swore towards a wise-cracking fan and dropped six of the next seven games as the red mist descended under bright sunshine. "I think there was no sense to turn on lights on court at 5pm when we have another four hours of daylight," fumed the Serb 17-time Grand Slam winner. "Completely unnecessary to turn on the lights. The explanation I got was for TV reasons. I hope the viewers enjoyed it," he added.

Djoko warned
The normally mild-mannered Djokovic earned his warning from French umpire Damien Dumusois for snapping at a cheeky fan who shouted "Nervous?", as he faced three break points at 4-4, 0-40 in the third set. "I misconducted myself verbally. That's why I got the code violation," a sheepish Djokovic told reporters after he had calmed down.

"It was very bright. There was no reason for the lights. "For the first two sets, just had things under control. At 4-1 [up in the third set], I was agitated. As I said, should not happen to me. I know better. I have experience. But it does happen, I guess. I allowed him to come back to the match. Other than the little letdown that I had when I was 4-1, 4-2 up in the third set, other than that I thought I played well, especially in the fourth set."

Medvedev defeats Goffin
Rising star Daniil Medvedev, 22, cruised into the last 16 of a Grand Slam for the first time to set up a showdown with Djokovic. The Russian breezed past Belgium David Goffin 6-2, 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 in two hours.

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