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THE LOW DOWN: What's up with Nole's towel-throwing?

A few readers and I expressed disappointment (see comments here) in Novak Djokovic's retirement during his semifinal match against a parent-bashing Roger Federer.

After barely losing games against Ivan Ljubicic, Andy Murray, and Sam Querrey (even earning two love sets) the Serb pulled out of the match citing a sore throat, dizziness + fatigue:
Q. What's the problem, Novak? NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I didn't feel good for last three days. I've been waking up with some sore throat. But I thought it's not going to be nothing special.
But obviously when you're playing against the No. 1 player of the world, you obviously get a lot of balls back and longer points, and I just couldn't get enough energy back after each point. I needed a lot of time. And I just decided not to risk anything.

Q. You were already sick in the first set of the previous match.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, it's always like this. Last three days, as I said. But the previous opponents were not, you know, not that tough and I didn't have long rallies against the previous opponents like I had today.

Obviously I needed that step further and to do something more and special to win the points today. Of course, it's normal, you're playing against the best player in the world. And, unfortunately, I couldn't do that.

But, you know, I have to look on the bright side.
It sounds like he gave up big time. But, no one knows how serious or not his condition is right now. However, this retirement is the fourth since 2007: two in Davis Cup play, semifinals of Wimbledon '07, and Monte Carlo - all big matches, right?

The Serb must realize that these mid-match withdrawals will do nothing but bring up tough questions about his physical health, mental toughnesss, endurance, etc. until he proves otherwise.


(image via AP)

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