U.S Open defending champion Novak Djokovic yesterday advanced to the last eight of the ongoing U.S Open tennis championship beating Denis Kudla 6-3 6-4 6-2 .
The Serbian court sensation achieved the feat over his American opponent despite playing with a should injury.
A report monitored from Reuters that the champion had looked shaky in previous game as the shoulder had to be attended to time and again.
“I managed to play almost pain free, that’s a big improvement from my last match,” said top seed Djokovic.
“Obviously I didn’t know how the body would react and I am just glad to finish the match tonight.”
But he looked to be playing pain-free against Kudla, the 16-times Grand Slam champion winning 81% of his first-serve points and turning aside all seven break points he faced against the unseeded American.
It was Kudla’s second match in days, yet the gut that he displayed was amazing, even as he raced around the court to make a number of shots that surprised Djokovic but was simply overmatched.
Djokovic twice pushed back his pre-match practice but came out firing right from the start as served out to love to begin the match and broke Kudla for a 3-1 cushion en route to wrapping up the first set without showing any signs of distress.
The Serb broke again in the fifth game of second set and was in total control as he served out to love in the ensuing game for a 4-2 cushion.
Djokovic opened the final set with another break and added another in the seventh game before closing out the match when he served out to love.
The only time Djokovic looked bothered during the match came in the first set when he screamed at someone who talked during a point inside Arthur Ashe Stadium.
It marked the second incident of the day between Djokovic and a spectator as the Serbian, apparently angry at being interrupted while serving during his practice session, told one individual: “Trust me, I’ll come find you.”
Up next for Djokovic will be former champion Stan Wawrinka, who beat Italian Paolo Lorenzi earlier on Friday.
Djokovic owns a 19-5 career record versus Wawrinka, who is seeded 23rd, but has not faced the Swiss since losing to him in the 2016 U.S. Open final.
Born in Serbia in 1987, Novak Djokovic began playing tennis at age 4, and was sent to train in Germany at age 13.
After a steady ascent to the top levels of the sport, he won the Australian Open in 2008 and led the Serbian national team to its first Davis Cup win in 2010. In 2011, he claimed three of four Grand Slams and compiled a 43-match winning streak en route to the world’s No. 1 ranking.
With his first French Open win in 2016, he became the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to hold all four major titles at once.
Djokovic was spotted by Yugoslavian tennis legend Jelena Gencic at his parents’ sports complex. Gencic then worked with Djokovic for the next six years.
During this time, the war in former Yugoslavia and the bombing of Belgrade meant that, for almost three months, Djokovic and his family would spend a few hours in the middle of each night in the basement.
Djokovic has said that the hardships of war drove him to pursue tennis with even greater determination.
At 13, he was sent to the Pilic Academy in Munich, Germany, to pursue higher levels of competition. In 2001, at age 14, he began his international career.