World number one Novak Djokovic came to the Tokyo Olympics 2020 aiming for a Golden Slam but he will be leaving the capital of Japan medal-less. After a heartbreaking defeat in the men’s singles semifinal against Alexander Zverev, Djokovic lost a hard-fought battle against Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain in the bronze-medal match on Saturday. The top-ranked Serb lost his cool and abused his racket several times during a 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-3 loss to Busta in the third-place shoot-off.Also Read - Post Knee Surgery, Roger Federer Hoping to Return at 'Some Point Next Year'
It was Djokovic’s third defeat in two days and it came less than 24 hours after he was beaten by Zverev of Germany in the men’s singles semifinals. Hours after losing a tough men’s singles match, world no. 1 also withdrew from the mixed doubles bronze-medal match at the Tokyo Olympics due to a left shoulder injury. What could have been a mouth-watering clash between two world No. 1s and reigning Wimbledon champions — Serbia’s Djokovic is the world No. 1 men’s player, while Australia’s Ashleigh Barty is the women’s numero uno — ended in a damp squib with the former pulling out at the last minute. Also Read - Neeraj Chopra, Tokyo Olympics 2020 Gold Medallist, Receives Special Gift From 2008 Beijing Winner Abhinav Bindra
The 34-year-old will leave Tokyo without a medal and will need some time to recover from a draining performance in extreme conditions that didn’t meet expectations. Djokovic had arrived in Tokyo trying to become the first man to have a Golden Slam. He had already won the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon in 2021 and was trying to complete the rare phenomenon with a gold medal at the Olympics followed by the US Open title, which starts at the end of August. Also Read - Davis Cup: Rohan Bopanna And Ramkumar Ramanathan Crack in Must-Win Doubles Match, India Lose 1-3 to Finland
At the Olympics, where big-ticket players like Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer were not playing, it gave Djokovic his best chance of completing a Golden Slam. With the dream shattered, his next opportunity at an Olympics gold will now come in Paris 2024. He will be 37 by then.
Meanwhile, no.9 seed Belinda Bencic won Switzerland’s third Olympic tennis gold with a nail-biting 7-5, 2-6, 6-3 defeat of the unseeded Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic in two hours and 30 minutes on Saturday.
Previously, Marc Rosset had won gold in men’s singles at Barcelona 1992 and Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka teamed up to win the men’s doubles at Beijing 2008. In addition, Federer was the men’s singles silver medallist at London 2012, while Timea Bacsinszky and Martina Hingis captured silver in women’s doubles at Rio 2016.
The result marks Belinda’s first title since Moscow 2019 after losing both of her previous finals this season, in Adelaide and Berlin. The 24-year-old trailed by an early break in the deciding set against Marketa, but was able to execute her aggressive strategy in key moments to seal victory.
Earlier, world No.6 Elina Svitolina won the bronze, rallying from 1-4 down in the final set to defeat Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina, 1-6, 7-6(5), 6-4 and clinch Ukraine’s first-ever Olympic tennis medal.
Playing in her second Olympics, Elina’s determination was the story of her bronze-medal run. Four of her six matches were won in a deciding set.
Elina defeated Germany’s Laura Siegemund, Australia’s Ajla Tomljanovic, Greece’s Maria Sakkari, and Italy’s Camila Giorgi, before losing in the semifinals to Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic.