Djokovic meets with Bayern stars at Qatar Open

By Harry West 6 January 2017 170
Djokovic meets with Bayern stars at Qatar Open

Novak Djokovic enjoyed the opportunity for a photo alongside some Bayern Munich superstars following his win over Fernando Verdasco at the Qatar Open.

The Serb might not have felt so sociable had he fallen to a defeat which looked a certainty at one stage.

Djokovic, having lost the first set, staved off five match points in a second-set tie-breaker, before eventually prevailing 4-6 7-6 (9-7) 6-3 to book a showdown with Andy Murray.

And afterwards, the world number two celebrated by sharing a snap with some other sporting celebrities.

Bayern's Arjen Robben, Robert Lewandowski and Xabi Alonso were all pictured alongside Djokovic in Doha as the Bundesliga champions enjoy their mid-season break before returning to competitive action against Freiburg on January 20.

It was not all about mixing with his fellow stars for Djokovic, though, as he took time to reflect on a gruelling battle with Verdasco.

"It was quite a thrilling experience for me to be able to go five match points down... I'm obviously very pleased because you need these kind of matches, these kind of confidence boosters, for whatever is coming up after that," Djokovic said.

"He had three out of five match points with his serve, and three, four of the five match points he had a forehand to finish it off and he didn't.

"It's not because I've done something right. It's just that it happened that way. Only thing I could do is fight and get myself in a position to win the match. That's what I've done.

"Playing already in the finals of the first event definitely serves as a great confidence incentive. Obviously this is exactly what I hoped that I can achieve, to get to the finals.

"I'm hoping I can play on a high level and we can compete as we always did against each other. We always have very physical battles, long rallies, entertaining matches. Between number one and number two in the world, it's a perfect match-up for the final. Let's see what happens."

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Harry West