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'I'm sure Novak Djokovic would have had his heart in his mouth,' - Henman on linesman incident at Roland Garros

Novak Djokovic has progressed to the quarterfinals of French Open 2020
Novak Djokovic has progressed to the quarterfinals of French Open 2020
ANALYST
Modified 07 Oct 2020, 22:02 IST
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World No. 1 Novak Djokovic tamed 15th seed Karen Khachanov in the fourth round at Roland Garros. But during the match Djokovic accidentally hit a linesman again, which got everyone talking.

The Serb did not hit the ball in frustration this time. One of his returns to Khachanov sent the ball straight into the line judge's face, which is completely acceptable given that it happened during play.

Former World No. 4 Tim Henman gave his view on the accident while talking to Barbara Schett in the Eurosport studio. The 2004 French Open semifinalist labeled the incident a potential 'nightmare' for Novak Djokovic.

Henman surmised that Djokovic would have had his heart in his mouth for a second because of what happened to him at the 2020 US Open last month.

Novak Djokovic had infamously hit a lineswoman with the ball after losing a point in his fourth-round match against Pablo Carreno Busta. That error from the 17-time Grand Slam winner led to him being defaulted from the US Open.

'It's a nightmare - yeah, it's a nightmare, obviously' - Tim Henman on Novak Djokovic hitting the line judge again

As mentioned earlier, Djokovic tried to return a wide serve from Khachanov, but the ball ended up hitting a line judge in the face. Luckily the line judge didn't get hurt, and Djokovic immediately apologized for the accident.

Describing the entire situation, Tim Henman said:

"It's a nightmare - yeah, it's a nightmare, obviously. It's a great serve out wide from Khachanov, it's skidded off the line and he gets it at full stretch at the end of the racket and it hits the line judge."
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Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic

Henman clarified that you can't compare this incident with the events that transpired at Flushing Meadows. However, the retired British player believes that Djokovic would have been quite nervous for a moment or two regardless.

"Obviously it's totally different circumstances [to his US Open disqualification] because this was in play within the rally. But I'm sure that he would have had his heart in his mouth at that stage," the 46-year-old continued.

Can Novak Djokovic continue his dominance at Roland Garros 2020?

Although Novak Djokovic has been involved in numerous controversies this year, the 33-year-old's game seems to be in fine working order. After an unceremonious exit from the US Open, Djokovic bounced back in style by winning the Rome Masters in Italy.

Pablo Carreno Busta
Pablo Carreno Busta
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The top-seeded player has looked in sensational touch so far at the French Open, making it to the final eight without dropping a single set.

Djokovic will now face off against 17th seed Pablo Carreno Busta, who is the only man to have survived the Serb in an ATP tour match this season. It will be interesting to see whether Djokovic can go on to win his 18th Grand Slam title in Paris.

Published 06 Oct 2020, 18:51 IST
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