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Norrie’s Collision and Whining Ruffles Djokovic in Intense Showdown

Novak Djokovic only needed 88 minutes to book his place in the Rome Masters quarter-finals. This was the Serbian’s third victory over Cameron Norrie and the one with the most drama.

The world number 1 gave a good account of his abilities, breaking his rival thrice while wining 80% of his first serve points. Djokovic only accrued three break points in the duel but was visibly irritated by his rival in the meeting.

In a second set rally, hopeless after his drop shot return did not go according to the plan, Djokovic turned his back to Norrie. Not to miss the point, the British ace sent the overhead shot straight and found the Serbian in his path.

Norrie was quick to apologize as a visibly frustrated Djokovic glared at his rival. The Serbian was forgiving in his post-match comments and acknowledged it was not an intentional play by his rival. However, he did question Norrie’s peripheral vision at a very slow play.

“I did watch the replay when he hit me. Yeah, maybe you could say he didn’t hit me deliberately. I don’t know if he saw me. I mean, peripheralically [sic] you can always see where the player is positioned on the court. The ball was super slow and super close to the net. I just turned around because the point was over for me.”

Frustrated by Norrie’s Antics

While the body smash claimed highlights, Norrie tried his best to delay the inevitable. The British number 1 tried to rattle his rival including a medical timeout just before Djokovic was about to serve for the match.

Getting hit did not irritate Djokovic but it was his shenanigans erstwhile that frustrated the 22-time Grand Slam winner. The Serbian did not appreciate the repeated unsportsmanlike transgressions from his younger counterpart.

“It was not so much maybe about that, but it was maybe a combination of things. From the very beginning, I don’t know, he was doing all the things that were allowed. He’s allowed to take a medical timeout. He’s allowed to hit a player. He’s allowed to say C’mon in the face more or less every single point from basically first game.”

“Those are the things that we players know in the locker room it’s not fair play, it’s not how we treat each other. But, again, it’s allowed, so…”

What Happened to Nice Guy Norrie

Djokovic enjoys a good repertoire with Norrie and has practised with him in addition to locking horns on the court. This was the third meeting between the duo, all on different surfaces but each one of them had the same conclusion.

The Serbian expressed his surprise and confusion regarding Norrie’s on-court behaviour and found his attitude during their match to be puzzling. He questioned why the British ace brought a fiery and confrontational demeanour onto the court, which compelled him to respond in kind.

Djokovic firmly stated that he would not passively endure such actions, choosing instead to stand his ground and respond when confronted. Djokovic also highlighted his belief in leaving on-court incidents on the court, demonstrating a willingness to move forward and not let the encounter linger.

“I got along with Cameron really well all these years that he’s been on the tour. Practised with each other. He’s very nice guy off the court, so I don’t understand this kind of attitude on the court, to be honest.”

“But it is what it is. He brought the fire, and I responded to that. I’m not going to allow someone behaving like this just bending my head. I’m going to respond to that. That’s all it is. What happens on the court, we leave it on the court, and we move on.”

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