Novak Djokovic faces tough draw at Tokyo Olympics | Inquirer Sports
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Novak Djokovic faces tough draw at Tokyo Olympics

/ 02:34 PM July 23, 2021
Serbia's Novak Djokovic in action during his semi-final match against Austria's Dominic Thiem

FILE PHOTO: November 21, 2020 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic in action during his semi-final match against Austria’s Dominic Thiem during the ATP Finals on November 21, 2020. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic’s road to the Golden Slam is not an easy one, with possible matches against Andrey Rublev and Alexander Zverev in his path at the Tokyo Olympics.

Djokovic, representing Serbia, has won the season’s first three grand slams and could become the first male player ever to win the Golden Slam if he first captures gold in Tokyo. Then all that’s left is winning the U.S. Open in August. Steffi Graf is the only player to ever do it, in 1988.

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However, Djokovic has just one bronze medal to his name in three previous Olympics. He lost to Juan Martin del Potro twice, in 2012 (London) and 2016 (Rio), after capturing bronze at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Djokovic, 34-3 this ATP season, opens against Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien, ranked 139th in the world. But then things could get harder.

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Djokovic could face Italian Lorenzo Musetti in the third round. Djokovic trailed Musetti 2-love at the French Open last month before rallying for the victory.

Djokovic could face World No. 7 Rublev of Russia in the quarterfinals; it would be the first match between them. If he wins there, he could face the fifth-ranked Zverev of Germany in the semifinals.

World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev of Russia makes his Olympic debut against Alexander Bublik of Kazakhstan.

The tennis event is being held at Ariake Tennis Park, site of the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships. The ATP-500 event is played in October.

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