tennis

Djokovic through to Australian Open semifinals after Nishikori retires injured

8 Comments
By Ian Ransom

Novak Djokovic reached the semifinals of the Australian Open for a seventh time on Wednesday after eighth seed Kei Nishikori retired hurt when trailing 6-1, 4-1 in their quarterfinal.

Top seed and six-time champion Djokovic will meet Frenchman Lucas Pouille, a maiden Grand Slam semifinalist, on Friday for a place in Sunday's final.

Pouille continued his unlikely run at the Australian Open by stunning in-form Canadian Milos Raonic 7-6 (4), 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-4.

The odds were stacked heavily against the 28th seeded Pouille on his arrival in Melbourne after he lost all three of his singles matches for France in the Hopman Cup before making a first-round exit in Sydney.

Rafa Nadal and Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas will meet in the other semifinal on Thursday.

Nishikori, who went through three five-set matches at the tournament, was clearly struggling after a handful of games in the evening match at Rod Laver Arena and had a medical time-out after losing the first set.

He grimaced as a trainer worked on his right thigh and pulled out of the match after Djokovic won the fifth game.

Although appearing untroubled by any injury niggles, Djokovic was grateful for the short match, having complained of a sore back and a "couple of issues" after battling through a taxing four-set clash against Russian Daniil Medvedev in the previous round.

"As they say, this is exactly what the doctor ordered," he told Jim Courier in their on-court interview. "It's hard to win like this, especially against Kei. We've played a lot of matches against each other. I hope it's not too serious and he has a speedy recovery.

"I've had plenty of matches so far this year .. And I'll do everything to get ready for that (next) one."

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

8 Comments
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No idea what the injury was (I wasn't able to see the match), but as someone who's played a lot of sports, I can tell you for sure that as fatigue sets in, your technique tends to fall apart, which causes you to overcompensate with unnatural motions, which is what causes a large number of injuries. Nishikori's early-round struggles led to him playing a ton of sets and hours thusfar in the tournament, and I wonder whether that contributed to this.

Anyhow - the injury bug is back. Here's hoping it isn't as long-lasting or disruptive as it was a year ago.

Also - pity about Raonic. I was really enjoying his heroic run at this year's Aussie.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Nishikori, who went through three five-set matches at the tournament, was clearly struggling after a handful of games in the evening match at Rod Laver Arena and had a medical time-out after losing the first set...

Although appearing untroubled by any injury niggles, Djokovic was grateful for the short match, having complained of a sore back and a "couple of issues" after battling through a taxing four-set clash against Russian Daniil Medvedev in the previous round.

Good grief, It's a good thing Nishikori and Djokovic aren't boxing or MMA fighting.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

LOL Serrano.

Elite level sport puts strain on the body. Sometimes the body breaks down.

Different activities make different demands. You only need to look at McGregor's feeble attempt at Boxing to understand the difference. Which I'm sure you do.

It's not a question of toughness, which is what you seem to be alluding to.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Elite level sport puts strain on the body. Sometimes the body breaks down.

Novak's didn't which is why he advances

look at McGregor's feeble attempt at Boxing

Are you kidding? Boxers and MMA fighters alike gave him much respect for performing much better than anyone thought possible.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

At least Serena didn't retire from her ankle

Otherwise, that would had been 2 QF matches not going the distance - fans not getting their money's worth

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Elite level sport puts strain on the body. Sometimes the body breaks down.

LOL. It's tennis - running around on a court hitting or trying to hit a tennis ball. There's no striking or physical contact with your opponent. You get a muscle strain, you take a couple of aspirins and get back out there!

OK, OK, I concede you can get debilitating muscle strains that can take you out of the game.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Even after Naomi Osaka winning the U.S. Open and making her rounds in Japan, it seemed like many here are still focused on Nishikori. Well, Osaka is in the semi-finals folks!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Next year?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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