Novak Djokovic admits that by continuing his Australian Open title defense he is risking physical injury

The top seed suffered an abdominal injury in his third round win against Taylor Fritz on Friday, and his planned round of 16 game against 14 Seed Milos Raonic was dubious

After training at Melbourne Park on Sunday, he beat the great Canadian 7: 6 (7: 4) 4: 6: 6: 1: 6: 4 to get to the quarter-finals

Djokovic admitted in his court interview that he had retired from a tournament other than a Grand Slam, but his condition was good enough to support his pursuit of a ninth Melbourne title and 18 To continue overall major

The 33-year-old later declined to confirm whether he suffered a muscle tear, as he suspected after his win over Fritz two days earlier

“Mentally, I think you have to accept that I got into the game because I know I’ll likely be in pain all the way through, which I did,” Djokovic said

“But the level of pain was bearable, so I could actually play. And it went back and forth a bit during the game”

Djokovic was the second player to win 300 Grand Slam games after Roger Federer, as he was in the 12th The couple’s encounter maintained their perfect record against Raonic

“Most likely I won’t work out tomorrow and just go back to the recovery routine and hope it gets better,” he added

“It’s kind of a gamble, that’s what the medical team told me It’s really unpredictable, you have no way of knowing what’s going to happen to you when you’re on the field

“It could do a lot more damage than it does right now, but it could also be going in a good direction. This is something I don’t know, and I don’t think I’ll know until I stop taking pain medication take

“As long as I have a high dose of pain medication I can still endure some of the pain. But the tricky thing about the pain medication is that it kind of hides what’s really going on there so you might not feel it, but then could the great harm will be done

“But I’m fine with anything that happens after the tournament because I’ll be taking some time off to really heal before I step back on the field

“I have spoken a lot with my own medical team and also with the Australian Open medical team. They all agree that there is a slight, very small chance that I will do significant harm to me for an extended period of time would put you off the tour

“But they don’t think it will get much worse if it jeopardizes my entire season”

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World news – GB – Australian Open: Novak Djokovic admits “gambling” as he continues to defend his title