Novak Djokovic issues worrying fitness update after struggling in win over Enzo Couacaud at Australian Open
Novak Djokovic issued a worrying fitness update after his second-round Australian Open win on on Thursday and admits ‘it’s not good at all’.
Djokovic beat French world No.191 Enzo Couacaud 6-1 6-7 6-2 6-0 to seal his spot in the Australian Open third round and continue his title hunt.
Djokovic – who aggravated his existing hamstring injury in the early stages of the second set – is bidding to win his 10th singles trophy at Melbourne Park and is already the most successful men’s player in the tournament’s history.
The 35-year-old, who has won 21 Grand Slam titles and is looking to level Rafael Nadal on 22, was spotting limping around the court but beat Couacaud over four sets to set up a third-round tie against 27th-seed Grigor Dimitrov.
Speaking after his second-round victory over Frenchman Couacaud, who himself picked up an ankle injury in the first set, Serbian world No.5 Djokovic said: ‘To be honest it’s not good at all, but look, I take it day-to-day.
‘It was better in the last match than the feeling tonight, that’s all I can say. It’s really up to God to help me and the physio and everyone.
‘Let’s take it day-by-day and hopefully I will be able to recover and be ready for a tough match next up.’
Eurosport pundit Mats Wilander added: ‘That is not reassuring because I don’t remember him ever saying anything like that about his body.
‘Rafa [Nadal] is obviously very honest and gets asked about his body all the time but you never really see Novak injured, and if he is, he’s always very quiet about it.
‘That’s the worry. The good thing for Novak is when he’s injured he can do so much with a tennis ball these days.
‘As long as he can go through the matches he will find another way of playing tennis that very few players can do.
‘Of course it’s a worry but tactically he will find a way to play on one leg.’
Meanwhile, second seed Casper Ruud has crashed out to American world No.39 Jenson Brooksby in a shock second-round result.
Following Nadal’s exit, Ruud’s defeat means that the top two seeds have failed to reach the third round of the Australian Open for the first time in 21 years.
MORE : Rafael Nadal provides update on nasty muscle tear injury and reveals when he will return
MORE : Denis Shapovalov tells Aus Open fan to ‘shut up’ and accuses them of having too many beers