- 29 Aug 2019
Novak Djokovic revealed he did not know if he would be able to finish his second-round match against Juan Ignacio Londero as the defending champion overcame a shoulder injury to advance at the US Open.
World number one Djokovic pushed past the pain to outlast Londero 6-4 7-6 (7-3) 6-1 at Flushing Meadows on Wednesday.
Djokovic survived a huge test against Londero, while the 16-time grand slam champion required treatment on his left shoulder during the clash on Arthur Ashe Stadium.
The 32-year-old needed work on his shoulder in the first set, with the issue clearly bothering the Serbian star in New York, where countryman Dusan Lajovic or Denis Kudla await in the next round.
Make that wins this year for @DjokerNole!
— ATP Tour (@ATP_Tour) August 29, 2019
Djokovic was late to his post-match news conference and he told reporters: “I had to take time to address the injury that I have. It has caused hindrance to my game for sure tonight, especially with the serve and backhand. It was not easy to play with this kind of sensation, to be honest. I did not experience that too many times in my career.
“I was also lucky to find my way back in the second set and to win in the straight sets. I had obviously, you saw, a medical timeout. At changeovers, I tried to use within the rules as much as I can physiotherapy and medical help. That has definitely helped me stay in the match.
“The way it has started for me, especially midway through the first set, I didn’t know if I would be able to finish the match. I’m really glad I have.
“I’m going to assess this injury tomorrow [Thursday] even more with further consultations with experts in sports medicine. I’m hoping that in two days’ time I will be able to play pain-free, if that is possible.”
Djokovic added: “It is new in a sense that I’ve never had that particular issue in my career. It’s not new in a sense that it has bothered me now for almost a couple of weeks. It has been there. I’ve been experiencing some days of higher intensity of pain, some days less. It has been really fluctuating a lot, going up and down.
“What happened today on the court, actually how I felt, was quite rough and unpredictable. But, as I said on the court, you have to deal with this particular situation the way it is.
“I did have not too many times in my career, but I did have certain situations where I had to, as probably anybody else in professional tennis, go through pain and just figure out the way I can finish the match and hopefully win. I got myself that win.=
“Good thing about grand slams is you have a day off in between the matches. As I said, I’m hoping that with a proper medical help and treatments, I’ll be able to get myself in a better state than I was today in a few days.”