Djokovic Back, Set for Australian Open

Aubrey Yates
January 13, 2018

"It was a fantastic test for me to see where I am, to see what we have done as a team ... and whether it works on the court".

"Obviously, I was waiting for this moment for six months to get out on the court and play a match", he said.

It was a welcome sight for Australian Open organisers and fans following the withdrawals of five-time runner-up Andy Murray and Kei Nishikori as well as 23-time slam victor Serena Williams on the women's side, but Djokovic insisted he is still not 100 per cent fit with the tournament set to get underway on Monday. I'm getting in the groove and getting my elbow in the match play and was the first best-of-three match that I've played since Wimbledon a year ago.

"I don't want to be over-confident", Djokovic said.

Novak Djokovic has made a stunning return to tennis but he was hesitant to declare that his elbow is 100 per cent fit.

"Ideally I would have had another tournament before the start of the Open, but it was not meant to be".

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"I'm very happy with the way it went and that's all I can say. Especially the serve - that was the biggest question mark because of the elbow, that shot in my game was compromised", Djokovic said according to The Guardian.

Freshly confident, Djokovic will now head to Melbourne Park with the aim of replicating Roger Federer's feat at last year's Australian Open, when the Swiss star returned from his own six-month injury layoff and surprisingly won the title.

"It's the first time in my career that I've had such a long break", said Djokovic, who has slipped to world No.14. "I'll be fine for the Open". I personally didn't know what's going to happen. However, the six-time AO victor also seemed rusty in his second competitive match. If I got to play the way I did yesterday against the number five in the world.

And his performance gave him plenty of reasons to be happy, with the six-time Australian Open champion making a statement with a 6-1 6-4 win over world No.5 Dominic Thiem. "That's what matters. Hopefully I can get in some practice hours in the next few days and I'll be ready for the [Australian] Open".

"Finally back in the land down under", Djokovic posted on Twitter.

Still smiling afterward, Djokovic said he'd had doubts whether he'd be ready to play the first Grand Slam of the year, but the win over Thiem was a major confidence boost.

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