Tommy Paul admitted that Novak Djokovic wasn’t the player he wanted to face at the Australian Open but also noted that there are no bad opponents in a Grand Slam semifinal. On Friday, 25-year-old Paul was playing in his first Grand Slam semifinal at Melbourne Park.
Unfortunately for Paul, it wasn’t a memorable first Grand Slam semifinal as Djokovic handed him a 7-5 6-1 6-2 loss. “I think that many players have a lot of respect for his tennis. He is an impressive player, without a doubt, and especially here, in Australia.
I think that inside the locker room there is nobody who wants to see him in his part of the draw. But these are semis. You won’t find a bad player in a Grand Slam. Facing him here was a great experience. I knew he was going to play very, very well.
Obviously I wish I could have played much better today, but hey, he was the one who made me play badly, so… he’s a great tennis player,” Paul said after the match, per Punto de Break.
Paul on what surprised him about Djokovic
Djokovic, 35, and 25-year-old Paul were playing against each other for the first time in their careers.
Going into the match, Paul’s plan was to attack Djokovic’s second serve. But after the match, Paul admitted the quality of Djokovic’s second serve surprised him a bit. “I would probably say that his second serve is better than I thought.
Part of my game plan was to attack his second serve, but I was quite surprised. At important points he played very good seconds. At each point, the speed average of his second serve was a little higher than I thought it was going to be,” Paul said.
For 35th-ranked Paul, it was still a career-best result. When the ATP rankings list gets updates, Paul will for the first time in his career be a top-20 player.
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