Fixture: Novak Djokovic vs Damir Dzumhur
Date: 31 August 2020
Tournament: US Open 2020
Round: First round (Round of 128)
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York, USA
Category: Grand Slam
Surface: Outdoor hardcourt
Prize money: $39,024,000
Match timing: 7:00 pm EDT, 4:30 am IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN | India - Star Sports & Hotstar
Novak Djokovic vs Damir Dzumhur preview
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will begin his 2020 US Open campaign against Bosnia’s Damir Dzumhur on Monday. The Serb will be gunning to win his 4th US Open title and 18th Major overall at the New York event.
The Serb is by far the most in-form player on tour this year, with a perfect 23-0 win-loss record so far. He recently won his fourth title of 2020 at the Western & Southern Open, having already triumphed in the ATP Cup, Australian Open and Dubai Open earlier in the year.
Novak Djokovic has displayed some exceptional tennis all week despite all the controversies and health issues surrounding him. The Serb was plagued by a neck injury throughout the tournament, which saw him call for medical timeouts on a few occasions. And in his semifinal match against Roberto Bautista Agut a stomach issue crept in too, which required Djokovic to take some medicines on the sidelines.
Then on Saturday he resigned as the President of the ATP Players Council, and called for the formation of an independent council made solely by the players. It's safe to say the Serb is juggling a lot of major issues at the moment.
It remains to be seen whether all of that will affect Djokovic's performance over the next couple of weeks. But judging from how he beat everyone at the Cincinnati Masters despite being far from his best, suggests that his status as the US Open favorite remains intact.
Novak Djokovic vs Damir Dzumhur head-to-head
Novak Djokovic leads Damir Dzumhur by a margin of 2-0 in the head-to-head.
The duo played each other for the first time at the 2018 Paris Masters, where the Bosnian had to unfortunately retire after the first set. Their most recent encounter was at Doha 2019, where Djokovic won by a score of 6-1, 6-2
Novak Djokovic vs Damir Dzumhur prediction
Despite facing issues with his neck, Novak Djokovic surprisingly served at a very high level for much of the past week in the Cincinnati Open. The newly laid fast courts at Flushing Meadows have also aided him in that regard.
Djokovic’s movement and defensive ability are currently both operating at extraordinary levels. It has proven nearly impossible for players to hit winners past the Serb, who somehow finds a way to get balls back in play from the toughest of positions.
Djokovic's forehand and backhand have also been working well, against both flat as well as sliced shots. Needless to say, it is very difficult to come up with a viable strategy that can counter the World No. 1's near-flawless game.
Damir Dzumhur can compete well, and he can strike the ball well too on occasion. The Bosnian is quite agile on the court, and he uses his forehand to good effect. But playing Djokovic is an entirely different ball-game, even if the Serb is plagued by injury issues.
Prediction: Novak Djokovic to win in straight sets.Published 30 Aug 2020, 03:15 IST