Novak Djokovic was not amused.
Novak Djokovic was not amused.

Djokovic disgust at ‘pathetic’ controversy

NOVAK Djokovic admitted he had to stay mentally tough as the three-time Wimbledon champion shrugged off a controversial call against him to beat Brit Kyle Edmund in the third round at the All England Club on Sunday.

Djokovic was furious when he was denied a break of serve in the seventh game of the fourth set on centre court when the ball bounced twice before Edmund hit what was ruled a winner.

The Serbian was filthy with the decision and complained to the umpire but his outrage fell on deaf ears.

To add insult to injury, after Edmund scooped up the ball on the second bounce, his shot that was deemed a winner actually went wide. Had Djokovic challenged the call he would have won the point but instead his mood soured drastically.

And for the trifecta, Edmund's racquet actually touched the net, meaning Djokovic should have been awarded the point at the end of it all.

Serena Williams' coach Patrick Mouratoglou said on Twitter the bizarre sequence of events was an umpiring mistake that ranks in the top three blunders of all time and the global tennis media reacted in amazement to the debacle.

But the Serb managed to refocus after his lengthy complaint to umpire Jake Garner and eventually secured the break that sealed his 4-6 6-3 6-2 6-4 victory.

"I was 100 per cent convinced it was a double bounce in the fourth set, but anyone can make a mistake," Djokovic said.

"It was an important point. I asked the chair umpire how is it possible he plays that shot if it didn't bounce twice. It didn't make sense.

"I had to stay mentally tough, the next game was tough. I'm just glad to overcome this challenge in four sets."

Djokovic had cooled down after his win and said Edmund didn't deserve any criticism for showing what some may label dubious sportsmanship by playing the double bounce.

He also said he asked to challenge Edmund's winner with Hawkeye once he realised the chair umpire wasn't going to acknowledge the double bounce, but was told it was too late.

Novak Djokovic was not happy after the win.
Novak Djokovic was not happy after the win.

The 31-year-old took aim at the crowd on centre court, saying it was "unfair" at times and the most hostile environment he's faced at Wimbledon as fans got behind their countryman on the other side of the net.

"Today some people just kept on going and provoking," Djokovic said.

Edmund said he was unaware the ball bounced twice in the controversial fourth set moment.

"I was scrambling. That's the thing, you need television to see it. If in real life it's hard to tell, then it's hard for me in the moment when you're trying to make that split decision," he told reporters.

Djokovic plays Russian World No.40 Karen Khachanov for a place in the quarter-finals.

Former world No.1 Djokovic, who won Wimbledon in 2011, 2014 and 2015, has ended Britain's challenge at this year's tournament, with Edmund the last of the 12 home players in the singles.

Djokovic is into the last 16 of a major for the 44th time to take him second on the all-time list.

"It was tough, Edmund is playing really well. The forehand we know is a big weapon. Not an ideal situation for me but somehow managed to come back," Djokovic added.

"I am looking forward to a second week of a slam. I have been playing these Wimbledon courts for a decade.

"I have wonderful memories of Centre Court and Court one and I'm looking forward to competing some more."

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