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Novak Djokovic's slightly odd habits with his water bottle have sparked curiosity among Wimbledon fans after he was seen 'inhaling' from it rather than drinking.
During his round of 16 victory over Dutchman Tim van Rijthoven, the Serbian star was seen gesturing with his bottle to his coaches box, before tipping it up and squeezing it into his mouth.
Observers on social media noticed relatively quickly that whatever was in the bottle didn't appear to be water, raising questions as to what it could be.
A similar situation occurred at the Australian Open in 2020, with Djokovic jokingly dismissing questions about it at the time by saying his bottle contained a 'magic potion' prepared by his physio.
Continued interest prompted an unnamed source within the All-England club to tell The Telegraph there were no concerns about doping whatsoever, and that Djokovic was one of several players to take to ingesting isotonic and dry pre-workout powder mid-match.
It is a trend that seems to have become more popular among players, however the source wasn't convinced of its efficacy.
"You wouldn't really get any benefit from doing it mid-match, but I'm sure this is isotonic," said the source.
I would very much like to know what was in this bottle. It certainly wasn’t liquid, and he gestured to his coach before inhaling it. Very odd. pic.twitter.com/bBG62BOMFh
— Damian Reilly (@DamianReilly) July 5, 2022
"A lot of players have started eating powder, even pre-workout isotonic powder. They've started eating it without water.
"It's mainly pre-workout stuff because it gives them a buzz. I imagine it's disgusting in the throat. It's weird, but it's what they are doing."
Djokovic prevailed in a five-set quarter-final epic over Jannik Sinner to book his place in the semi-finals, where he will face British rising star Cam Norrie.
— ieup (@ieuanNo9) July 3, 2022
#Wimbledon what was Djokovic inhaling from that white ‘water’ bottle?
— MothertruckerBee (@bee_trucker) July 3, 2022
Novak Djokovic through to Wimbledon semi-final after sporting act
The 35-year-old was able to close out the fourth set and even lift his game in the fifth to advance with a 5-7, 2-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 victory in three hours and 35 minutes on Tuesday.
The victory was his 26th in a row at Wimbledon and 84th in total - tying Jimmy Connors for the second-most in men's singles at SW19, trailing only Roger Federer's 105.
Djokovic was praised for his sportsmanship when, in the third set, Sinner collapsed on his ankle while chasing a ball at the net.
Grimacing in pain on the court, Sinner was eventually assisted to his feet by Djokovic, who won over many fans by checking on the condition of his Italian opponent despite being two sets to love down at the time.
The duo were met with a warm round of applause.
The World No.3 was praised for showing his sportsmanship, despite trailing the Italian on the scoreboard.
Djokovic now stands two wins away from a drought-breaking 21st grand slam title.
His 20th came at Wimbledon last year.
He has subsequently squandered a two-set lead in the US Open final against Daniil Medvedev, been deported from Australia on the eve of the 2022 Australian Open, then lost to Rafael Nadal in the French Open quarter-finals.
However, Djokovic said he is more determined this year to take home the SW19 crowd after acknowledging, as it stands, that he most likely won't be competing at the US Open due to the border restrictions on those who are not vaccinated.
Ninth seed Norrie sent fans into a state of delirium with an emotion-charged 3-6, 7-5, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 victory over Belgian David Goffin in Tuesday's second quarter-final.
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