Wimbledon 2018: 4 encouraging signs for Novak Djokovic in his quest to win Wimbledon
On Saturday, Novak Djokovic faced his toughest test yet at this year's Wimbledon, which came against Britain's Kyle Edmund. The Serb came out on top, as he dropped his first set of Wimbledon, in what was an enthralling encounter. This win could prove vital for Djokovic, as he had to contend with both a dangerous opponent and a pro-Edmund crowd.
An upset looked on the cards, as Edmund took the first set 6-4 in dominant fashion. However, it seemed inevitable that the Serb would lift his game, as he upped the intensity and aggression to take the next 6-3. Although the 31-year-old won the next two sets, the match was full of incidents, with Djokovic at the heart of the drama. The Serbian's ball bouncing really tested the patience of the home crowd, as they began to protest for a time violation.
Even in the face of all the drama, Novak still managed to come out on top and progress to the fourth round. This victory could prove to be a landmark one, as he continues to search for his best form. Novak's lack of energy at the start of the match came as a surprise to many. He will need to make a faster start against the likes of Federer and Nadal if he is to stand a chance of beating them.
Here are four encouraging signs for Djokovic going into the next few rounds:
His ability to battle adversity
In his third-round match against Britain’s Kyle Edmund, Novak had to fight two battles; one against an inspired opponent and the other against a raucous home crowd. Over the years, the Serb has never really received the same support as Federer and Nadal, despite his incredible haul of trophies and records.
In the match against Edmund, the former world No.1’s ball-bouncing drew frustration from the crowd as they vocally called for a time violation against the Serb. However, even with the British crowd fiercely on his case, the world No.21 still held serve and maintained his composure to eventually take the set.
The drama between Djokovic and the crowd continued, when the Serb contested a point that he felt was unfairly awarded to Edmund. After a gripping exchange, Novak played a cute drop shot to win the point and leave Kyle scrambling. The Brit did hit a passing shot, but the Serbian was adamant that the ball had bounced twice. The replays showed that the ball had indeed bounced twice.
His appeals again drew jeers and confusion from many inside centre court, as Novak’s breakpoint was taken away from him. The 12-time Grand Slam champion remained unfazed and undeterred and went onto the win the last set 6-4. His ability to fend off adversity will be key to his chances at Wimbledon, as he looks to build on the momentum gained from the past three matches.