Tennis Freaks

“1821: Nadal, I’ve noticed, has a problem with his shorts, in that they keep on getting stuck up his jacksie and he has to pull them out before every point. Not sure why he doesn’t just get a size up, he’s probably loaded.”

Gamewatch: Federer v Djokovic

Australian Open, Melbourne Park

Fourth round result:

R Federer v Novak Djokovic

6-2 7-5 6-3



By Sarah Holt

Third set:

Federer 6-3 Djokovic
Federer stretches to dip the ball over at 15-0. The world number one begrudgingly challenges after his ball is called long and he is proven right as the ball is in for 40-0 and he wraps up the match on the very next point. Federer receives applause from the crowd as Djokovic sighs, shrugs and leaves the court.

Federer 5-3 Djokovic
Federer takes the first point on the Djokovic serve but nets for 15-15. The teenager goes long but Federer’s blocked return is wide. The top seed misses two backhands in a row to hand Djokovic the game and now he must serve for the match.

Federer 5-2 Djokovic
An angled forehand volley from Djokovic takes him to 15-15. Federer really wants to close this out now and shouts “Come on” as he clips a low volley over the net for 30-15. Two mistakes from Federer hand Djokovic break point to the roars of the crowd but he fails to find the return for deuce. An easy overhead and an ace sees Federer race to a hold.

Federer 4-2 Djokovic
Djokovic recovers a little for 40-15 but nets the ball to concede a point to the top seed. Federer swings the ball wide to see the Serbian teenager hold.

Federer 4-1 Djokovic
Djokovic looks a little jaded now as Federer holds to love with an ace and the Serbian walks back to his chair before the score has even been called.

Federer 3-1 Djokovic
An ace from Djokovic takes him to 15-15. Federer pounces at the net for 15-30 and grabs a break point chance as he clips a backhand line right in the corner. The Serbian is maybe a little tired now as he pumps the ball into the tramlines to hand Federer the break.

Federer 2-1 Djokovic
Federer blasts through another service game to keep his nose in front.

Federer 1-1 Djokovic
Djokovic has never taken a set from Federer and he’d like one now. Djokovic is the youngest player left in the draw – his pal Andy Murray is exactly one week older than him – and taking something from Federer would be a real boost to his progress. The Serbian holds to 15.

Federer 1-0 Djokovic
Djokovic is looking to make an immediate impression on the Federer serve and takes him to 15-30. Federer cuts out the danger at the net for 30-30 and holds.

Second set:

Federer 7-5 Djokovic
A second-serve ace from Djokovic takes him to 30-0. Federer goes long for 40-15 but Djokovic dumps the ball into the tape to concede another point. Federer will want to avoid the tie-break and conjures a stunning passing shot for deuce. A good return takes Federer to advantage and the youngster cannot handle a blow-by-blow rally as he nets the ball to hand Federer the break – and the set.

Federer 6-5 Djokovic
Djokovic sends a fizzing forehand down the line and beyond the reach of Federer for 30-15. The 19-year-old is pushing really hard – but maybe a bit too hard as he fails to control his last two shots to see the defending champion hold. There are whistles as Federer changes his shirt, lovely as Federer is, the Aussie crowd seems to be fairly indiscriminate when it comes to wolf-whistling.

Federer 5-5 Djokovic
Djokovic blazes a high volley long and wide for 15-15 and he holds his head. He is able to keep up with Federer though as he holds.

Federer 5-4 Djokovic
Are there signs of the super cool Federer being rattled? He loses the first point but recovers in spectacular fashion, sailing a backhand volley over the net. The defending champion wrong foots Djokovic and he is back in front.

Federer 4-4 Djokovic
Federer swats the ball across the net for 0-30. The Swiss nets the ball and sends a return long for 30-30. Federer commits an unforced error as he nets the ball to whistles from the crowd. The top seed goes long again and Djokovic has clawed himself back into this.

Federer 4-3 Djokovic
The 19-year-old Serbian takes the first point from Federer but a big serve brings the Swiss level. A backhand winner from Djokovic takes him to 30-30. Federer shoots a forehand long to give Djokovic a break point chance and after a frantic rally, the defending champion misses an overhead and is broken. And that’s brought the Serbian fans back to life too.

Federer 4-2 Djokovic
A better game for Djokovic as he delivers some strong serves and the Serbian 14th seed holds to love.

Federer 4-1 Djokovic
Federer confessed to a friend of his that he thought something was wrong with his eyes because sometimes he sees the tennis ball as big as a basketball. That is the kind of vision and control that Djokovic is dealing with – or not as Federer holds to love.

Federer 3-1 Djokovic
Djokovic is beginning to look more frustrated now as he clips the top of the net and slides to 30-30. The net intervenes again, but this time in Djokovic’s favour for 40-30. Federer lurks in the centre of the court as he batters away all the Djokovic has to throw at him for deuce. The Serbian is given a much-needed boost by his fans and he holds with an ace to get on the board.

Federer 3-0 Djokovic
Federer is doing what he does best as he races to hold.
“You don’t want to wake the sleeping giant in Federer but that is what Djokovic has done here.” Five Live analyst Sam Smith

Federer 2-0 Djokovic
Apparently Djokovic was on Australian TV ahead of the match claiming Federer was “going down”. He is still trying to make good on his ambitious claim and moves to 40-15 with a well-struck passing shot. But Federer cranks up the pressure again for deuce. Federer stretches for a forehand down the line and shouts out “Come on,” as he passes Djokovic again to take an early break.

Federer 1-0 Djokovic
Federer races to 40-15 with a second ace and a wild shot from Djokovic sees Federer easily hold.

First set:

Federer 6-2 Djokovic
Djokovic is working hard as he tries to stop Federer from racing to the set. Federer rocks back on his heels and lashes a forehand into the corner of the court for 30-40. An ace from Djokovic saves deuce to a burst of cheers from the Serbian section of the crowd. After three more deuces, Djokovic goes long to gift Federer a third set point and Federer fires down a cross-court winner to take the set. The defending champion hit 15 winners as he wraps up the set in 38 minutes.

Federer 5-2 Djokovic
Djokovic challenges after his forehand is deemed to be long. Hawk-Eye shows it was in and the point is replayed. That won’t please Federer, who has already voiced his distaste for the introduction of technology, calling it “nonsense”. It doesn’t matter too much as Federer holds to move comfortably ahead.

Federer 4-2 Djokovic
An ace out wide from Djokovic takes him to 15-15 but Federer steams in for a clipped volley over the net. His part-time coach Tony Roche applauds his approval. Djokovic does enough to hold.

Federer 4-1 Djokovic
The teenager is out to win the break straight back as he comes up with a couple of great shots for 0-30. Federer unleashes a forehand and then Djokovic goes long for 30-30. The defending champion closes out the set and is straight back to the set for a glug of water.

Federer 3-1 Djokovic
There is a little delay as the tardy VIPs take their seats in the president’s box. Federer whips up some spin to bamboozle Djokovic, who falls 0-30 down. Federer nets for 30-30 and a long backhand from Djokovic sees the third game in a row go to deuce. Djokovic tries to drop shot Federer after a pounding rally but it goes into the tramlines and he is broken.

Federer 2-1 Djokovic
Djokovic conjures a brilliant point with a drifted backhand drop over the net which is beyond the reach of Federer. The 19-year-old sends another backhand passing shot down the line for 30-30. After being taken to deuce, Federer holds.
“I sense a real edge about Federer, I think he just wants to sink his teeth into Djokovic.” Five Live analyst Sam Smith

Federer 1-1 Djokovic
Djokovic, wearing a lemon yellow shirt, black shorts and white socks pulled up tight, concedes two points to Federer. The defending champion gets his first break chance at 30-40 as he strings together some probing groundstrokes. Djokovic saves deuce, and there are some riveting rallies as the Serbian holds, with a glare across the net.

Federer 1-0 Djokovic
Federer wins the toss in Melbourne, where the roof on the Rod Laver Arena is closed, and elects to serve. A couple of cut-off volleys at the net and some mishit forehands from Djokovic are enough for the Swiss to hold to 15.


Roger Federer has made his usual smooth progress through to the fourth round and he is seeking his 33rd consecutive win.

Djokovic, 19, has been picked out by Federer as a player of the future and will be doing his best to prove those credentials out on Rod Laver Arena.

Federer, the defending champion, holds a 2-0 record over the Serbian 14th seed, beating him in the Davis Cup and at Monaco last year.

There is plenty of support from the Serbian fans in the crowd when Djokovic arrives on court – but those applause are eclipsed when Federer walks for his first night match.

Story from BBC SPORT


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