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Novak Djokovic Says He's Not 'Faking' Injury amid Questions During Australian Open

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 24, 2023

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 21: Novak Djokovic of Serbia stretches during the third round singles match against Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria during day six of the 2023 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 21, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Novak Djokovic has been dominant at the 2023 Australian Open despite dealing with a hamstring injury, leaving some to question the severity of the leg issue.

The 35-year-old fought back against any allegations of faking his injury during Tuesday's press conference:

"I leave the doubting to those peopleβ€”let them doubt. Only my injuries are questioned. When some other players are injured, then they are the victims, but when it is me, I am faking it. It is very interesting. I don't feel that I need to prove anything to anyone.

"I have got the MRI, ultrasound and everything else, both from two years ago and now. Whether I will publish that in my documentary or on social media depends on how I feel. Maybe I will do it, maybe I won't."

Djokovic took multiple medical timeouts in the third-round win over Grigor Dimitrov, although he showed no issues in his fourth-round victory against Alex de Minaur.

"You tell me how you thought he looked out there...playing him, I thought he was moving pretty well," De Minaur said after his straight-sets loss.

The injury might not have bothered him during Monday's win over De Minaur, but it had been a clear issue in previous rounds:

Christopher Clarey πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ πŸ‡«πŸ‡· πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡Έ @christophclarey

Djokovic in real trouble here with his left hamstring. Wincing during points and just pulled up running for a wide ball. Stay tuned

Eurosport @eurosport

"To be honest... 𝐒𝐭'𝐬 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐚𝐭 𝐚π₯π₯" <br><br>Novak Djokovic does not feel positive about his injury - which could derail his Australian Open title hopes 😬<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AusOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AusOpen</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/DjokerNole?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DjokerNole</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/Babsschett?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Babsschett</a> <a href="https://t.co/5t37H7nkJz">pic.twitter.com/5t37H7nkJz</a>

Djokovic has overcome the injury to reach the quarterfinal, winning four matches while dropping just one set.

The nine-time Australian Open champion has extended his winning streak in this event to 25, including titles in 2019, 2020 and 2021. He did not compete in 2022 after refusing to receive the COVID-19 vaccination.

Djokovic will look to continue his streak in his upcoming match against No. 5 seed Andrey Rublev, who will be the highest-ranked player he has faced in this tournament.