Djokovic accused of tanking after brutal loss

Tennis great John McEnroe has levelled some stunning accusations at Novak Djokovic after the World No.2 crashed out of the French Open.

Djokovic effectively waved the white flag on Wednesday, bowing out in the quarter-finals with a whimper to Dominic Thiem.

The 30-year-old Serb, who has prevailed in some of the sport's epic battles on the way to 12 major titles, was barely recognisable as he capitulated in a 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 6-0 defeat by Austria's Thiem in the quarter-finals.

Image: Getty

The 'bagel' third set – the first Djokovic had conceded at a major since 2005 – drew the ire of McEnroe.

"It looks right now as if Djokovic doesn't want to be on the court," he said in commentary for Eurosport.

"This is tank city."

After squandering two set points in the opener on a blustery Court Suzanne Lenglen, Djokovic's renowned fighting spirit ebbed away quickly and he surrendered the third set in 20 minutes.

The result was all the more remarkable as in five previous matches with the 23-year-old he had lost one set and last month thrashed him 6-1 6-0 in Rome - a result that suggested Djokovic had found his mojo, missing since he won the French a year ago.

While Thiem's part in Djokovic's downfall should not be overlooked, it was the Serbian world No.2's astonishing collapse that was the talk of Roland Garros.

Image: Getty

Djokovic, whose new coach Andre Agassi had already flown home, appeared lost and listless.

"Obviously nothing was going my way and everything his way. Just pretty bad set," Djokovic said.

"It was decided I think in the first set today. I tried. I lost that crucial break in the beginning of the second, and he started serving better, backing it up with the first shot. He deserved to win. He was definitely the better player."

Thiem will now take on Rafael Nadal, who received a saloon passage through to the semi-finals when fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta retired with an abdominal injury with Nadal leading 6-2 2-0.