A hamstring strain forced Novak Djokovic to interrupt short a practice match with Daniil Medvedev before to the Australian Open, causing a health worry for the Serb.

The 21-time Grand Slam winner, who missed last year’s Australian Open owing to being deported on account of his vaccination status, played just one set against Medvedev before retiring. Djokovic spent just less than forty minutes on Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday, his first appearance in Melbourne since being ordered to leave the nation a year ago.

The Serb, the No. 4 seed for this month’s major in Melbourne, originally injured his hamstring last week during his run to victory at the Adelaide International 1 tournament.

After quitting from his encounter with Medvedev, Djokovic told 9News Melbourne, “I just felt it pulling and I didn’t want to risk anything worse.”

“I played a set and apologised to him [Medvedev] and he was understanding. I just want to avoid any bigger scares before the Australian Open.”

Djokovic defeated Medvedev in the opening game, but after receiving treatment when ahead 3-2, he went on to win only one more game.

In November, Djokovic’s three-year immigration suspension was lifted, allowing him to compete for a 10th Australian Open championship when the tournament resumes on January 16.

The 35-year-old has won 34 consecutive matches in Australia, with his last loss occurring at the 2018 Australian Open against Hyeon Chung of South Korea.

Last updated on 11 Jan 2023 - 14:52

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