Djokovic deals with pain, Federer faces deficit at US Open
Maybe, just maybe, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer are feeling some lingering after-effects of their historic Wimbledon final last month.
For Djokovic, it’s in the form of a left shoulder that is hurting right now and probably contributed to slower-than-usual serves in the U.S. Open’s second round Wednesday night.
For Federer, it’s in the form of slow starts: He’s lost the opening set each of his first two matches at Flushing Meadows for the first time in 19 times he’s entered the Grand Slam tournament.
If they’re going to reprise their rivalry late next week in the semifinals, both will need to improve.
Djokovic was repeatedly visited by a trainer for shoulder massages at changeovers during a ragged 6-4, 7-6 (3), 6-1 victory over 56th-ranked Juan Ignacio Londero of Argentina. Djokovic is a righty, of course, but he uses his other hand both for ball tosses on serves and on his two-fisted backhand — and both were less effective for stretches.
“I was definitely tested. This is something I’ve been carrying for a quite a while now,” said Djokovic, who repeatedly shook his left arm between points while serving in his first-round match Monday and did that again this time. “It wasn’t easy playing with the pain and you have to fight and hope you get lucky with some shots.”
Even though he won for the 35th time in his past 36 Slam matches, including in a fifth-set tiebreaker against Federer at the All England Club on July 14, the Serb looked uncomfortable and went away for stretches, including trailing 3-0 in the second set…….read more
Source: AP News