Novak Djokovic advanced to the Australian Open semi-finals for the 11th time, defeating Taylor Fritz.
Beyond the final eight in Melbourne, the world number one has never lost, and his desire for a 25th Grand Slam victory is undeniable.
All eight of their prior meetings saw Djokovic defeat American Fritz, so this was definitely not an easy match; it took three hours and forty-five minutes for the top seed to ultimately secure a 7-6 (3) 4-6 6-2 6-3 victory.
Struggling in the heat on Rod Laver Arena, they played only 16 minutes of the first game and 84 minutes of the first set.
Fritz, who was attempting to make it to a Slam semi-final for the third time in his career, levelled the match by astonishingly saving all 15 break points he faced in the first two sets.
It was just his third victory over the Serbian; the other two came in this tournament’s third round in 2021, where Djokovic overcame an abdominal ailment to win in five sets.
However, as Fritz started to suffer pain in his left foot in the third set, Djokovic started to step up his game. In the fourth set, he broke twice to advance to a record-tying 48th Slam semifinal.
On the court, Djokovic stated to Nick Kyrgios, “I suffered a lot in the first couple of sets.” because of his excellent tennis as well. I felt like he was choking me from the back of the court.
“It was really hot while the sun was still out, and it was really difficult to find the right timing.” Taylor has one of the greatest serves in the world, as we all know. I was aware of the hazard he poses while performing at such a high level.
“I broke him when it counted, even though my conversion rate on the break points was pretty bad. I believe that halfway through the third set, all the way to the finish, I improved my game.