Novak Djokovic's disqualification in the fourth round of the US Open has been the talk of the tennis community over the last few days. Playing against Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta, the Serb struck a ball in frustration which hit a lineswoman on the court, and that prompted the referee to default him.
Carreno Busta is now set to take part in the semifinal of the tournament on Friday. And the Spaniard's coach Samuel Lopez recently spoke about the incident, explaining how it has affected his protege's mentality going into the final days of the tournament.
Don't wish it on anyone: Samuel Lopez on Novak Djokovic's 'moment of bad luck' at USO
Speaking to Eurosport, Lopez said that while the incident may have been a bizarre one-off for Novak Djokovic, Carreno Busta's strong play had a role to play in it. The World No. 1 had just lost multiple break point opportunities, and after getting broken himself, he was one game away from losing the first set.
"On Djokovic's day (match) there was a lot of talk about the expulsion and very little about how Carreno was playing," said Lopez. "Why did Novak get into that situation? Part of the merit, beyond the stories and consequences, came for the high level that Pablo was giving."
"After losing those three break points and then losing his serve, Novak became very nervous. Perhaps that should have been discussed a bit more," he added.
Lopez further went on to claim that even though the rule of law is explicitly clear, the incident was a result of a moment of bad luck for Novak Djokovic - who was clearly frustrated during the match.
"It was very bad luck, I don't wish it on anyone. Novak Djokovic had a moment of tension, of nerves, but it was bad luck. Throw that ball and have it hit the linesman ... most of the eliminations in history were never intended. There was a moment of lack of control and it happened to him, we stayed with the level we reached during the game," asserted Lopez.
The coach also believes Carreno Busta might have won the match anyway, with or without the default. He insisted that no credit should be taken away from the 29-year-old, since a win is a win.
"When the game ended, we were ahead," Lopez said. "The level is there, the mentality and the head can with everything. We will never know what would have happened; what we do know is that that game was won by Pablo. In whatever circumstances, but it counts as Pablo's victory."
After the win against Novak Djokovic, Pablo Carreno Busta displayed a very high level to get past Denis Shapovalov in the quarterfinal. Despite losing the fourth set 6-0 and suffering from apparent injury and fitness concerns towards the end, the Spaniard managed to pull through.
"In a quarterfinal of the US Open you have to be there until the end. He has impressive tennis moments, he has shots that are nice to see on a court, but we had to pull the job, hard work," Lopez said about the quarterfinal. "The big difference is that Pablo dared and went for Denis when he had a choice."Published 11 Sep 2020, 23:06 IST