Djokovic into Belgrade final after fighting past Khachanov

By: AFP
Published: 09:02 PM, 23 Apr, 2022
Djokovic into Belgrade final after fighting past Khachanov
Caption: Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates his victory against Russia’s Karen Khachanov at the end of their Serbia Tennis Open ATP 250 tournament semi-final match in Belgrade.
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Novak Djokovic reached his first final of the year at the Serbia Open on Saturday after recovering from a set down to beat Karen Khachanov 4-6, 6-1 6-2.

The world number one will face Andrey Rublev or Fabio Fognini as he bids for a third Belgrade crown, and the 87th title of his career.

For the third match in a row, Djokovic dropped the first set after losing his serve in the opening game, but the Serb stepped up his level in the second and third sets.

Djokovic beat the 26th-ranked Khachanov for the fifth straight meeting and sixth time in seven matches.

The Belgrade event is only Djokovic's third of 2022. He was deported from Melbourne - and denied the chance to defend his Australian Open title - after he entered the country unvaccinated.

He was also barred from playing at the Indian Wells and Miami Masters over his controversial Covid-19 stance.

The 34-year-old made the last eight in Dubai in February and then lost his opening match at the Monte Carlo Masters last week.

AFP

Agence France-Presse is an international news agency.