Tennis Tournament: Novak Djokovic failed to lead Serbia to the Davis Cup final in Madrid, as world No. 1 duo Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic won the decisive doubles match to cement Croatia’s victory.
After winning the second singles match 6-4 6-2 against Marin Cilic, Djokovic gave his team optimism of reaching the final.
Borna Gojo, the world number 279, completed his magical Davis Cup week by defeating Dusan Lajovic 4-6 6-3 6-2 and getting the Croatians off to a flying start.
With Djokovic’s victory, the match would be decided between the experienced Croatian duo and Djokovic and partner Filip Krajinovic.
After a tense first set and a break for the favourites early in the second, Djokovic and Krajinovic faced a difficult challenge in keeping Serbia’s hopes alive.
However, Croatia’s experience paid off, and their 7-5 6-1 victory gave them a 2-1 victory and a berth in Sunday’s final against either Russia or Germany.
It was a dismal finale to Djokovic’s season, as he had lost out on a calendar Grand Slam at the US Open and had also been eliminated from the ATP Tour finals at the semi-final stage.
However, the 34-year-old said he had no regrets about how his season ended and that he will learn from mistakes such as the “painful” loss to Croatia.
According to Djokovic, “I gave it my all for the national team, which has a special meaning and significance for me, but it wasn’t meant to be this time.
“As much as it affects me personally and as a team, these are usually the best opportunities for me to grow as a person and as a player.
“One singles victory is insufficient. In some ways, this type of competition is brutal because it requires you to win every single match or set you to play.
“I have no regrets in my life. I strive to learn from difficult situations like these.
“As much as it hurts me personally and as a team, these are usually the best opportunities for me to grow as a person and a player.”
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