World no.1 Novak Djokovic ended the dream run of Russian qualifier Aslan Karatsev in the Australian Open semi-finals, maintaining his bid for a record-extending ninth title.
The 33-year-old Serb, showing no ill-effects from an abdomen injury sustained in the third round, overwhelmed the 114th-ranked Karatsev 6-3, 6-4 6-2 to reach his 28th Grand Slam final.
The 34-year-old, who completed the victory with his 17th ace, will now look to add to his 17 major crowns and move one step closer to all-time title leaders Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer (both with 20 Grand Slam trophies).
“My best match so far”: Novak Djokovic
“This is the best I have felt in the entire tournament. My best match so far. I could swing through the ball. No pain.“
“I will practice one of the two days [before the final]. I am feeling well, I have had enough match play and practice.”, Djokovic said in the post-match interview.
Djokovic will play the winner of Medvedev vs Tsitsipas. When asked you would he want to face. He said: “I’m going to take the popcorn and enjoy it, I absolutely have zero preference.“
“I thought Stefanos did incredibly well to hang in there because Rafa was playing amazing,” added Djokovic. “Medvedev is the guy. He is playing at the highest level the last three months.“
This will be Djokovic’s 9th final at Melbourne. He is undefeated in the finals at Rod Laver Arena and would like to continue the same.