The number one tennis player in the world, Novak Djokovic, dispatched Matteo Berrettini in the quarterfinals of the US Open on Wednesday and then played down questions about his ambition to become the first man to win all four Grand Slam tournaments in the same year since Rod Laver in 1969.
Djokovic overcame a sluggish start against the sixth seeded Italian and took a 5-7, 6-2, 6-2, 6-3 victory that brought him closer to his 21st Grand Slam title.
The Serbian, who will face fourth seed Alexander Zverev of Germany in the semi-finals, interrupted former player Patrick McEnroe when he outlined the matter in an interview while still on court.
“You don’t have to ask me anything about it,” Djokovic said. “I don’t want to think about it, I know it’s there, I’m just concentrating on the next match and we’re going step by step.”
He was also determined not to discuss the matter at the post-match press conference.
“I’m tired of answering that. I’ve said millions of times that of course I’m aware of the story, of course it gives me motivation,” said the 34-year-old.
“If I start thinking about it too much, it overloads me mentally. I really want to get back to basics and what really works for me mentally.”
Tied with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal with 20 Grand Slam titles each, Djokovic acknowledged he is in a unique position, but added that he expected a tough battle against Zverev, who deprived him of a chance to win a “Golden Slam” by defeating him. it in the semifinals of the Tokyo Olympics.