De Minaur out of Wimbledon quarter-final against Djokovic

De Minaur out of Wimbledon quarter-final against Djokovic Alex de Minaur of Australia sits on the grass after a fall during his second round match against Jaume Munar of Spain at the Wimbledon tennis championships in London, Thursday, July 4, 2024. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)

Alex de Minaur has pulled out of his quarter-final clash with Novak Djokovic with a hip injury suffered just three points from the end of the breakthrough Wimbledon win that got him there.

The Australian star announced he was pulling out of the tournament hours before he and Djokovic were scheduled to play each other on Centre Court on Wednesday.

He said the match – his first quarter-final appearance at Wimbledon, off the back of reaching the same round at Roland-Garros last month – would have been the biggest of his career.

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A downbeat de Minaur said it was obviously not an announcement he wanted to make.

"I'm devastated but I had to pull out due to a hip injury," he said.

"A little tear of the fibre cartilage that kind of is at the end or connects to the adductor.

"I felt a loud crack during the last three points of my match against Fils and got a scan yesterday, and it confirmed that this was the injury, and with a high risk of making it worse if I was to step on court."

He said doctors hadn't been able to give him a definite recovery plan because it was such a "unique" injury, but it could be anywhere from three to six weeks, which would put him in doubt for the Paris Olympics.

"The problem with me going out and playing is that one stretch, one slide, one anything can make this injury go from three to six weeks to four months," he said.

"So it's too much risk."

The ninth seed said he wanted to do anything to play but felt it would have been "almost disrespectful" to take the court against someone like Djokovic at close to 100 per cent.

"I needed a miracle. That's what I needed waking up this morning," de Minaur told host Tony Jones on the Nine coverage.

"I gave myself every single chance to hope that something was going to happen.

"But, yeah, it just wasn't, and that was just my last hope."

Dressed in a hoodie, with his arms crossed and a cap pulled low over his eyes, de Minaur told reporters minutes earlier the decision was "based on pain, a little" and that he was struggling to sleep and feeling the injury just while walking.

The 25-year-old said the injury meant he hadn't even been able to really enjoy what he'd achieved this week but he was still able to see some positives.

"Probably the positives is that I'm playing these tournaments and I'm in the deep end of them," he said.

"It's probably why it hurts so much more, knowing that I'm – I feel close, closer than probably ever before.

"I feel like you know, I'm putting myself in these positions and, you know, it's a shame that I can't go out there and play."

In the previous game, the anguish had been obvious on de Minaur's face immediately as he barely celebrated his gritty four-set round-of-16 over Frenchman Arthur Fils

The muted reaction, followed by a grimace and a shake of the head to his coach's box, sparked concerns the Aussie had hurt himself with the deft forehand volley that one him the match.

But he later confirmed the injury had actually come three points earlier, as he slid to try to get a forehand out wide on his first match point.

"I knew, as soon as I felt that pop, I knew something bad had happened," he said.

"So it's been two days of just worrying and just waiting to see what the results showed."

Djokovic will face Taylor Fritz or Lorenzo Musetti on Friday for a berth in the final.

The second-seeded Djokovic has won seven of his men's-record 24 grand slam titles at Wimbledon.

- with Associated Press

  • https://www.msn.com/en-au/sport/other/de-minaur-out-of-wimbledon-quarter-final-against-djokovic/ar-BB1pJKeF?ocid=00000000

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