Serbian tennis champion Novak Djokovic’s bravery in reaching the Australian Open closing with a foot damage has been tempered by recent allegations that he may have damaged match guidelines.
Footage has emerged of the Serb star receiving a thriller drink throughout his come-from-behind win over Frenchman Enzo Coucaud within the second spherical of the Australian Open.
It got here throughout a match the place he surrendered the second set and wanted a medical timeout for his sore hamstring earlier than happening to win.
Djokovic is seen making use of a label to his group water bottle earlier than giving it to a match official at hand over to the court docket.
The previous world number one rigorously learn what was written on the label when he acquired the bottle.
The footage has raised considerations that Djokovic and his group could also be breaking the foundations by controlling when and the place gamers play throughout the Open.
Stars are allowed to speak verbally with their group solely when they’re on the identical aspect of the court docket. If they’re in reverse instructions, alerts should be used – this was the case when Djokovic’s footage was taken.
It’s the third time in six months that the 21-time Grand Slam winner has courted controversy over his drink of selection at a tennis match.
Djokovic suffered a shock defeat to Danish teen Holger Roone on the Paris Masters in November, after which a video of his physiotherapist shaking him into the limelight hit the headlines.
The physio was caught on digital camera mixing a thriller drink within the stands earlier than handing a ball woman a go to the Serbian champion. One other member of Djokovic’s group used his again to obscure his imaginative and prescient of what was happening.
A member of Djokovic’s group passes a bottle with a freshly hooked up label to a match official throughout play within the second spherical of the Australian Open.
Djokovic took the time to rigorously learn the label on the bottle, which some recommended contained his group’s teaching notes
Earlier, the 21-time Grand Slam champion attracted consideration on the Wimbledon Championships for smelling a substance from a water bottle.
When requested what was within the bottles of drinks, Djokovic solely replied: ‘magic potion’.
Many followers instantly attacked the star participant for his repeated use of the thriller drink.
One stated in response to the video, ‘There’s at all times some conspiracy about Djokovic.’
‘He does this on a regular basis and afterwards appears to be working like a Street Runner cartoon,’ added one other.
Different tennis followers thought the liquid itself was not the issue, however the notice hooked up to the bottle may be.
‘Teaching notes possibly?’ A fan recommended.
Others stated it could possibly be a sponsorship problem.
A fan stated, ‘A product made by an organization that does not sponsor it, in order that they’re masking the label.’
Others have been fast to defend Djokovic for any untoward incident, saying that nobody can be brazen sufficient to eat a banned substance in plain sight.
One fan wrote, ‘The group member who mixes the sports activities drinks will get an excessive amount of consideration.’
‘There is a pretty ridiculous notion that one thing is up, the stadium is full, there are cameras in all places, gamers have blended drinks of their bins… I imply use just a little logic right here, possibly they do not wish to give anyone an edge .
A fan holds a banner in help of Novak Djokovic of Serbia throughout their third spherical match in opposition to Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria
Djokovic has been secretive about his bottles of ‘magic potion’ previously and has been questioned 3 times in six months about his use of the key liquids.
Additionally, inside a locker room you at all times see a participant group making drinks, in unmarked bottles and placing them within the fridge. Coaching applications, dietary dietary supplements and so forth. are commerce secrets and techniques.’
One other tennis fan identified that Djokovic had already been cleared at Wimbledon for ingesting a ‘mysterious’ drink that turned out to be isotonic.
‘I hope you all have a Wimbledon assertion underneath your eyes so you possibly can relaxation straightforward. It’s isotonic, extremely popular amongst athletes,’ he posted.
‘It’s in powder type and will be blended with water or taken dry and water afterwards.
Australian Alex de Minaur is the final native left in singles and Djokovic has a giant process forward of him
‘It is onerous to consider that individuals are so silly that an athlete would take a banned substance the place hundreds of spectators and cameras will be watching you. He’s often examined earlier than and after the match and even when he doesn’t play.
One other fan posted: ‘Each athlete has sports activities, vitamin-enriched and electrolyte drinks, aimed toward athletes to replenish glucose, fluids and electrolytes which are misplaced throughout strenuous exercise.’