Tennis world erupts over 'insane' Novak Djokovic drama at Wimbledon

Novak Djokovic, pictured here in action at Wimbledon.
Novak Djokovic left the tennis world in disbelief with his comeback at Wimbledon. Image: Getty

Novak Djokovic has left the tennis world in disbelief after erasing a two-set deficit to beat Jannik Sinner and advance to the Wimbledon semi-finals.

The three-time defending champion recovered from a two-set hole to deny the 10th-seeded Italian 5-7 2-6 6-3 6-2 6-2 in three hours and 35 minutes on Tuesday.

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Chasing a fourth Wimbledon title in a row, Djokovic will play home hope Cameron Norrie for a place in Sunday's final.

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.

Djokovic could have easily been headed for the exit gates after Sinner snatched the first set from 4-1 down, then grabbed the second to have the Serb on the ropes.

But the six-time champion regrouped to claim his 10th consecutive five-set victory at the championships, a run stretching back to 2006.

"He was the better player for the first two sets but I had a toilet break and a pep talk in the mirror," Djokovic said.

"It's true - sometimes these things are necessary. The toilet break was the turning point.

Novak Djokovic, pictured here celebrating his victory over Jannk Sinner at Wimbledon.
Novak Djokovic celebrates his victory over Jannk Sinner at Wimbledon. (Photo by Frey/TPN/Getty Images)

"I go through the same doubtful moments as anyone else. The inner fight is the biggest fight you go through.

"I always believed I could turn the match around. I've done it a few times in grand slams. I'm just glad I'm through.

"This court has inspired me, every time I step on it the love affair keeps going and hopefully I can maintain that run."

There were ugly scenes for Sinner in the fourth set when the youngster slipped and cried out in agony after hurting his ankle.

Djokovic showed his class by jumping over the net to aid his young opponent.

Jannik Sinner, pictured here after injuring his ankle against Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon.
Jannik Sinner injured his ankle against Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon. (Photo by Frey/TPN/Getty Images)

Tennis world in disbelief over 'insane' Djokovic

Djokovic then had fans in disbelief with an extraordinary winner in the fifth set when he went into a complete split and ended up face-down on the grass.

The Serbian star produced a stunning backhand winner on the run in which he was stretched to his absolute limits before landing on his stomach and extending his arms out in celebration.

Novak Djokovic, pictured here after his extraordinary winner at Wimbledon.
Novak Djokovic reacts after his extraordinary winner at Wimbledon. (Photo by Shi Tang/Getty Images)

Tuesday's 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 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.

Norrie, who is the first British man to reach the Wimbledon semi-finals since Andy Murray in 2016, said he was going to "take it" to top seed Djokovic.

"I think just winning a match like this, I'm in shock," he said.

"I have flashbacks of all the hard work and all the sacrifices I have had to make and it's definitely paid off - and it feels pretty good."

Cameron Norrie, pictured here celebrating after his victory over David Goffin at Wimbledon.
Cameron Norrie celebrates after his victory over David Goffin at Wimbledon. (Photo by Frey/TPN/Getty Images)

The result was tough on Goffin, who made the quarter-finals on his last appearance at Wimbledon in 2019.

In Tuesday's match, he hit more winners (49 to 38) and won more points, with his 151 trumping Norrie's 145.

with agencies

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