'Greatest' talk won't derail Djokovic in 50th Grand Slam quarterfinal
Fucsovics blasted 41 winners past Rublev as he reached his first quarterfinal at the Slams
Novak Djokovic reached his 50th Grand Slam quarter-final on Monday with a straight-sets victory over Chile’s Cristian Garin at Wimbledon but insisted that the growing discussion of him as the “greatest player of all time” will not derail his campaign.
World number one Djokovic eased into the last-eight at the All England Club for the 12th time, 6-2, 6-4, 6-2, and will face Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics for a place in the semifinals.
“Confidence levels are very high after winning the French Open,” said Djokovic.
“It was one of my biggest wins in the circumstances — two five-setters, two four-setters in the second week.
“They took a lot out of me but they also gave me wings.
“The further I go in the tournament, the more comfortable I feel and I look forward to the next challenge.”
Djokovic, chasing a sixth Wimbledon crown and a record-equalling 20th major title, is halfway to a calendar Grand Slam.
Only two men have swept all four majors in the same year with Rod Laver the most recent back in 1969.
Djokovic’s French Open triumph last month allowed him to become only the third man to claim all four majors on more than one occasion.
Even Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal cannot claim such an achievement.
“I don’t really allow myself too much to think about that,” said Djokovic when asked if he has even considered the mantle of ‘greatest ever’.
“I feel privileged and honoured of course and very happy to be in this position to make history in the sport.
“At the same time I need to go about my everyday routines and everyday life on the tour pretty much the same way that I feel it has reaped a lot of success for me.
“If I start giving away my attention and energy to these speculations and discussions and debates, I feel like it’s going to derail me from what I feel is the priority.”
Djokovic is right to be cautious.
Back in 2016, he had won the Australia and French Opens to stand halfway to a calendar Grand Slam.
But he crashed to a shock third round defeat to Sam Querrey at Wimbledon and lost to Stan Wawrinka in the US Open final.
“It’s not a secret that I am trying to win as many Slams as possible. I went for historic No. 1. I managed to achieve that milestone,” added Djokovic.
“Of course, it’s soothing to my ears and my ego, as well, that someone thinks of me that greatly. To be in that conversation is obviously an honour.
“At the same time I just have to always work on getting my attention to the right things. I feel like that’s the right way to go.”
Djokovic broke serve five times on Monday and hit 28 winners, twice as many as his 17th-seeded Chilean opponent.
Fucsovics became just the third Hungarian man and first in 73 years to reach the Wimbledon quarter-finals.
The 29-year-old, ranked at 48 in the world, defeated Russian fifth seed Andrey Rublev 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, 6-0, 6-3.
Fucsovics blasted 41 winners past Rublev as he reached his first quarter-final at the Slams.
He is only the third Hungarian man in history to reach the quarterfinals at Wimbledon after Bela von Kehrling (1929) and Jozsef Asboth (1948).
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