The second round of the Australian Open was completely crazy! So many twists and turns, ups and downs in the game… And nothing hinted that it would be like this. It was a Grand Slam match in Melbourne. Novak easily won the first set. He played excellently, while his opponent, Popirin, was at an average level. When it’s like that, there’s no doubt who will win. Routine set, 6:3. We expected to see the same scene in the rest of the match, but we saw a complete turnaround. Djokovic faltered, and the Australian, fueled by immense support from the crowd, started playing the best tennis of his career… He won the second set and seemed extremely powerful in those moments. He continued to dominate in the third set, reaching four set points, but he couldn’t capitalize on any of them! He didn’t take advantage of a single opportunity to win the third set, and he paid the price. Who knows what would have happened if the Australian had gone up 2-1 in sets. In the fourth set, he quickly broke Djokovic’s serve and easily closed out the match. Additionally, Novak had to deal with unruly spectators who frequently acted in an unsportsmanlike manner. Djokovic even called on some fans to come down to the court and say to his face what they were shouting. In the 3rd round, Djokovic’s opponent will be Tomas Martin Etcheverry. We hope for a much better performance than what we saw in the first two rounds.
Novak had three match points in this game. Djokovic is one game away from victory. Popirin threatened, reaching 30-15, but from that moment on, Novak won three points in a row. They dominate with their serves… A service game won without dropping a single point. Djokovic wins his first game on serve without dropping a point. The Australian had four set points, but Djokovic was at his best in those moments. Experience prevailed in the tiebreak, and finally Popirin started making a few mistakes… He played fantastic tennis in the crucial moments. He easily wins his service game. For now… We witnessed drama in this game, it was 30-30, but excellent serves and good smashes brought an important game for the home player. Exactly two hours of tennis in Melbourne. He is getting better and better. He serves excellently, with just one lost point he takes a new game. However, there were some issues… Popirin started with a 30-15 lead, fortunately, he did not manage to break again. MEDICAL TIME-OUT The match continues. Aleksej received assistance from the doctor and will continue the duel. The Australian takes a medical timeout due to an injury to his left calf. We’ll see how Popirin will look in the remainder of the match… The Australian is playing at an extremely high level. Without dropping a point, a game for Novak. We hope that this is a return to his usual level of play. He doesn’t have as many “deadly” serves as in the first set, and Popirin is completely equal in exchanges of shots. Djokovic needs to improve a lot, it’s unbelievable how much he has dropped in his game after the first set… An amazing lob shot brought Aleksej the decisive point in this part of the game. The stadium erupts with excitement, as does the celebration for Popirin… But… A break is needed in one of the next two service games of his rival. He easily wins another service game. There has been a huge decline in Djokovic’s game in the second set. After losing the game, Novak yelled at his box. He also wins the second service game without any problems. This was his easiest won service game so far. Serbian ace plays fantastically. If he keeps it up, this will be an express victory. In the previous two service games of his rival, Novak was pressuring, and now he is materializing it. Aleksej is miles away from getting a break point at this stage of the match. This game, won without dropping a point, is resolved in Novak’s favor. For now, Popirin has won only 2 points in three of Djokovic’s service games. Aleksej has great support in this match. He lost one point, but with excellent serves, he easily wins the game. ![Novak Djokovic](/data/images/2024/01/17/10/3791790_profimedia0837975705_ff.jpg?ver=1705485058) Novak Djokovic will serve first. In their previous encounter in Tokyo, Novak won in straight sets (6-4, 6-2). Novak is the clear favorite for this match, and anything other than a victory for Djokovic against the 43rd ranked player in the world would be a real sensation.