Australian Open

Novak Djokovic's Fans Shouldn't Overreact to Aussie Open Failure

Jan 21, 2014; Melbourne, AUSTRALIA; Novak Djokovic (SRB) reacts during his match against Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI) on day nine of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park.  Mandatory Credit: Nicolas Luttiau/Presse Sports via USA TODAY Sports
Presse Sports-USA TODAY Sports
Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIJanuary 23, 2014

Novak Djokovic's dream of becoming the first man to win four straight Australian Opens in the Open Era is gone.

However, he and his fans shouldn't allow the disappointment of the quarterfinal loss to Stanislas Wawrinka to linger.

Since Wawrinka defeated Djokovic 2-6, 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 9-7 on Tuesday, critics have questioned the legendary Boris Becker's influence on Djoker's game. In Dec. 2013, Djokovic had Becker join his staff. In the first opportunity to show what he has picked up from the former world No. 1, things didn't go as planned.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 14:  Novak Djokovic of Serbia and his coach Boris Becker talk during a practice session during day two of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 14, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Matt King/Getty Ima
Matt King/Getty Images

Montreal Max tweeted this after Djokovic's loss:

Sam Clench of News.com.au did a full writeup about how fans are calling for Becker and Djokovic to part ways.

This is a bit of an overreaction and disrespectful to Wawrinka.

Jan 21, 2014; Melbourne, AUSTRALIA; Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI) challenges a call during his match against Novak Djokovic (SRB) on day nine of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park.  Mandatory Credit: Nicolas Luttiau/Presse Sports via USA TODAY Sports
Presse Sports-USA TODAY Sports

After all, the 28-year-old from Switzerland did come into the tournament as the No. 8 seed. It's true, he had lost 14 consecutive matches against Djokovic, but a loss to Wawrinka is nothing to be ashamed of or reason to question Djokovic's coaching staff.

Before the loss, Djokovic had a 28-match winning streak and 13 victories in a row against top-10 opponents. Needless to say, he hadn't been struggling.

If Djokovic were to fall short of the semifinals or finals in all or most of the next few tournaments he plays, then there would be some cause for alarm. He's still just 26 years old.

By most accounts, he should still be in the prime of his career. Looking at this loss as anything more than a minor setback would be irrational.

Djokovic doesn't appear to be taking it as anything more than that. Per the South China Morning Post (via Reuters), Djokovic said: 

"Well, look, you know, it has been the first official tournament for us. I'm satisfied with things that we've been talking about, working on. Of course, it's unfortunate that we finished the tournament in the quarter-finals."

Perhaps Becker isn't a good influence for Djokovic, but at this early stage it is too soon to tell. For now, Wawrinka deserves a ton of credit for beating one of the best in the world in one of his favorite venues.

 

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