'Novak Djokovic produced incredible level against Karatsev, Medvedev,' said Wilander
Novak Djokovic claimed the 18th Major title at the Australian Open, extending his Melbourne reign and staying on Federer's and Nadal's trail in the GOAT race.
Having to work hard in four consecutive matches, Novak overcame all the opponents and an abdomen injury to advance into the semis and move closer to his 100%. In the semis, Djokovic toppled the first-time Major semi-finalist Aslan Karatsev in under two hours to reach his ninth Australian Open final, facing Daniil Medvedev in the title clash.
Despite a solid effort in the opener, the Russian couldn't match Novak's level, losing 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 to propel the world's leading player towards another Major trophy. Praising the Serb, Mats Wilander said that he played perfect tennis in the semis and the final, producing aggressive tennis and mixing up his strokes nicely to overpower Medvedev and claim the first Major crown in over a year.
"He was saying, 'I'm not perfect, but I'm here.' Today and in the semis, he was perfect, with the way he played and physically. It was an incredible performance; he just got better and better, winning points in many different ways. Novak is so complete these days; he can hit those little drop shots and create new options with net rushings.
It looks as difficult to beat him here at the Australian Open as it is to beat Rafa Nadal at Roland Garros, and it shouldn't be because it's a much faster court. In theory, it should be much more difficult, but he looks so solid and confident. Once he gets into the lead, I don't know what you have to do to beat him," Mats Wilander said.