Holger Rune targets Novak Djokovic showdown in Australian Open Final amid growing calls for suspension

Novak Djokovic seems to be the target man for all young tennis players since he turned 36. The Serbian was handed his first loss against an under-22 player at the Wimbledon finals against Carlos Alcaraz. Since then, Djokovic has won the Cincinnati Open, US Open, and Rolex Paris Masters and it seems that the taste of defeat has long since gone.

However, Jannik Sinner shockingly defeated the Serbian twice in two weeks and made sure Djokovic didn’t help his country win the Davis Cup the second time. And now, he is eyeing to clinch the upcoming Australian Open away from the Serbinator.

Holger Rune grand Djokovic ambition

Holger Rune, a member of the NextGen stars, has revealed that he would love to compete against Novak Djokovic in the final of the 2024 Australian Open. Novak Djokovic, who is the record holder of the Australian Open with 10 Slams in Melbourne hard court, recently said that he would love to win more trophies come next. But with players like Carlos Alcaraz and Holger Rune already targeting the Serbian legend, it means the young generation has finally woken up.

In 2022, Rune made his Melbourne debut but waited till 2023 to get his first win in the first Slam tournament of the season. However, his campaign ended when he fell in the fourth round against Andrey Rublev, failing to capitalize on two match points and losing in five sets.

Despite his relative inexperience in the Australian Open, Holger Rune is willing to chase the near-impossible of defeating Novak Djokovic in the final. “Now I want to have great results on outdoor hard ground,” Rune told Bola Amarela when asked about a victory he fancies in 2024.

“I’ve done very well on clay, grass and indoor hard courts, so now it’s time to show off my outdoor hardcourt tennis. That’s why my choice would be the Australian Open final against Novak,” the 2022 Paris Masters champion added.

Novak Djokovic faces anti-doping test controversy

Before the Davis Cup tie against Serbian Novak Djokovic and British Cameron Norrie, the world No. 1 was asked to do a drug test, but he refused. However, Djokovic later admitted that he refused to get tested because the request came through only 30 minutes before the match was due to get underway and he felt it would disrupt his routine.

Nevertheless, strong accusation has been ongoing about his decision with the likes of Marc Madiot, the director of UCI WorldTeam Groupama and a two-time Paris-Roubaix winner, saying that Djokovic should be automatically suspended. Speaking on Les Grandes Gueules du Sport on RMC, he said: “There are rules of testing before and after competition. If the anti-doping body is doing its job, Mr. Novak Djokovic must be suspended.”

Novak Djokovic
New York Post

“He refused a test before the match and did it after. In cycling, you are subjected to a test and if you refuse, you are automatically positive. If that is the case, you are sanctioned. You don’t have the right to refuse testing, that’s the rule.”

“In the assortment of doping products there are those that can be detected for a very limited period of time. If you don’t test yourself before the start, during the match, their traces can be erased in the body. That is why testing was introduced before the competition. The fact that he was only warned is unreal.”

In recent years, doping tests have grown from a serious issue to a must for every player and Marc believes that if Djokovic says no to one, other young players will say no on many occasions, which will bring the value of the institution to shreds.

Are you eager to see yet another Djokovic-Rune clash in the next Australian Open? Make sure to let us know in the comments section.

Victor Okechukwu

219 articles


Leave a Comment