Novak Djokovic Beats Matteo Berrettini to Make the 2021 US Open Semifinals

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic. Photo by Gustavo Caballero/South Beach Photo/REX/Shutterstock (9474924x)

Novak Djokovic’s bid to complete a calendar-year Grand Slam and get a record 21st Grand Slam is alive and well. Despite falling behind to Matteo Berrettini in the US Open quarterfinals on Wednesday night, Djokovic bounced back to beat the Italian and progress to the next round.

The match against Berrettini started in the same fashion as Djokovic’s previous two matches. He lost the first set and it seemed that a big upset was possible. However, just like against Kei Nishikori and Jenson Brooksby, the world’s No. 1 tennis player asserted his dominance in the following three sets and strolled to an easy win.

By beating Berrettini, Djokovic improved to 26-0 in Grand Slam matches this season. He only has to claim two more wins to etch his name in the history books and become the first male player since 1969 and Rod Laver to win all four Grand Slams in a single season. Earlier in 2020, he claimed the Australian Open, French Open, and Wimbledon titles.

The first obstacle standing in his way of this historic feat will be the No. 4-seeded Alexander Zverev, whom he faces in the semifinals.

“I’m pumped,” Djokovic told reporters during a press conference. “The bigger the challenge, the more glory in overcoming it.”

The second semifinals match in the men’s draw will pit Canadian Felix Auger Aliassime, who currently ranks No. 15 on the ATP list, and the world’s second-ranked player Daniil Medvedev.