Dreams End as Novak Djokovic loses to Sam Querrey at Wimbledon 2016
Novak Djokovic is out of Wimbledon after a shock defeat to American 28th seed Sam Querrey ending his dreams of the calendar-year grand slam after the world Number One slumped to shock third-round Wimbledon defeat.
Bidding for a fifth straight major, Djokovic was outplayed by Querrey 7-6 (8-6) 6-1 3-6 7-6 (7-5), ending hopes of matching Rod Laver and Don Budge as the only men to win all four majors in the same year.
The reigning US, Australian and French Open champion, Djokovic had been chasing a third straight All England Club crown.
But he was undone by a terminal dual force — Querrey’s power and a strange inability to handle the occasion.
Martina Navratilova said the pressure was too much Djokovic after his 30-match Grand Slam winning streak.
“He never got away from that pressure,” she said. “I mean last year, getting into the grand slam four in a row — he never could kind of relax and normally when he is off he miss by a little bit but he was missing by so much.
“He is so precise, we are so used to so much precision … today he couldn’t find the court.”
Leading 5-3 in the fourth set, Djokovic blundered badly on serve — and repeated the trend in the tiebreak, where he led 3-1.
Serbia’s Novak Djokovic has been knocked out of Wimbledon in the third round.
In a match which echoed his fourth-round struggles against South African Kevin Anderson here last season, Djokovic was obliged to win the closing three sets to survive.
He simply could not with 34 winners to Querrey’s 56, seven aces to the American’s 31 and 14 squandered break points.
Djokovic had been unbeaten at the highest level since French Open defeat to Stan Wawrinka last year.
Trailing by two sets to love overnight because of rain interruptions, Djokovic exploded out of the blocks when the match restarted.
US player Sam Querrey celebrates after beating Serbia’s Novak Djokovic.
He broke Querrey’s serve in the second game and fourth game, ruthlessly dismantling the beanpole’s game to lead 4-0, before the rain returned.
Almost two hours were lost before Djokovic secured the set before play was halted again.
Querrey was the first to click back into action on resuming and, leading 3-2, put Djokovic under enormous pressure, forcing the Serb to defend three break points.
Djokovic’s desperate backhand half volley to escape the crisis turned the match.
Querrey stumbled at 4-all, when he succumbed to Djokovic’s pressure as the world champion earned the right to serve out the set.
But he failed miserably, dumping a forehand volley into the net.
And when rain stopped play again, he was precariously placed when serving at 5-6.
He clinically forced a tiebreak, led it 2-0 and 3-1 before suffering only his fourth defeat in 50 matches this season.