Wimbledon: Djokovic escapes Popyrin in 4 sets to advance to the Round of 16

Novak Djokovic clinches a seat in the Wimbledon Round of 16 (yahoo.com)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

Novak Djokovic claimed another Round of 16 ticket in the ongoing Wimbledon Grand Slam tennis tournament after taking down Alexei Popyrin in four sets- 4.6, 6.3, 6.4, 7.6- on July 7, 2024, at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London.

After dropping the first set that allowed his Australian challenger to build early momentum during their third-round duel, Djokovic quickly flipped the switch and scored a reverse sweep to seal the deal.

Djokovic had to endure an error-plagued opening set after allowing Popyrin to pile up his ace points coming from tons of service possessions.

With the efficient serving game that the Australian displayed in the first frame, Djokovic could only just stand in the no man’s land and watch the ball kiss the edge line.

However, after a shaky first-set start, Djokovic immediately bounced back and reverted to his usual hitting rhythm.

To kick off his resurgence, Djokovic lessened his errors in the baseline exchanges and did a better job receiving Popyrin’s booming first serves.

After completely snatching away Popyrin’s momentum when he leveled the game at 1-1, Djokovic just cruised through the match and dominated in the final two sets.

During the fiery third set, Djokovic disrupted Popyrin’s rhythm after scoring a much-needed break point midway through the frame.

Now only needing a set to move on to the next round, the Serbian superstar caught fire and pummeled Popyrin during their long baseline rallies.

Aside from his more consistent long shots, Djokovic also scored some huge plays from the net after deciding to cut Popyrin’s distance.

With the huge win, Djokovic’s goal of a record-extending Grand Slam winning streak is still alive and will have the chance to clinch world title no. 25 if he wins over Holger Rune in the Round of 16.

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