Novak Djokovic accused a loud group of British fans of showing him “disrespect” throughout the match as he completed Serbia’s 2-0 win over Great Britain with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over Cameron Norrie.
“Throughout the game they showed disrespect overall, but I kind of have to be prepared for that too,” he said. “In Davis Cup it’s normal for fans to cross the finish line sometimes, but in the heat of the moment you also react and show in a way, how should I put it, that you don’t allow that kind of behavior.”
Djokovic’s irritation with a group of fans sitting behind the British bench was evident in the first set, and as he played out the set he punctuated the hold at love by blowing a kiss to a particularly rowdy spectator.
When Djokovic addressed the crowd in an on-court interview after the game, parts of the British fan groups began drumming loudly, drowning out his voice. The fans traveling with drums are part of the British tennis fan groups that travel to Davis Cup matches. Djokovic reacted immediately: “We will sleep well tonight, keep going, keep going,” he said in an interview addressed to the fans. “Learn to respect players. No, you are quiet! No, be quiet!”
Afterwards, Djokovic said that while fans were allowed to do whatever they wanted, he would continue to react in similar scenarios. “You can do whatever you want, but I will respond to it,” he said. “That’s what happened. And in the end, whoever was there, I tried to talk, and they deliberately started playing drums so I wouldn’t talk, and they tried to annoy me the whole game . So, yeah, we talked a little bit at the end.”
Leon Smith, Great Britain’s Davis Cup captain, noted that there were no problems between the two teams: “I shook hands with (Viktor) Troicki, said ‘Well done’ and said ‘Well done’ to Novak. Look, he played a great game. No, there was no hostility between us. In fact, I think we all walked around there, their entire coaching staff, shaking hands. We have nothing but respect for that.”
Beyond the drama, Djokovic continues to break records whenever he steps on the court. The Serb is undefeated in 21 singles games in the Davis Cup since 2011. With the victory, his 44th Davis Cup win, Djokovic now holds the Serbian record for most Davis Cup wins, overtaking former doubles No. 1 Nenad Zimonjic.