Novak Djokovic survives three-set thriller to win Adelaide International title

Novak Djokovic stretched his winning streak to 18 games with victory in Dubai.

Novak Djokovic stretched his winning streak to 18 games with victory in Dubai. Photo: Getty

An agitated Novak Djokovic has saved a match point on the way to beating world No.33 Sebastian Korda in an epic three-set thriller at the Adelaide International 1 final.

Djokovic produced a nerveless overhead smash while moving backwards to save Championship point during the second set of Sunday night’s decider.

The 21-time grand slam champion was pushed all the way before prevailing 6-7 (8-10) 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 in a match that lasted three hours and eight minutes.

Djokovic was so frustrated after losing the first set that he ordered two of his entourage – including his brother – to leave his supporter box.

The world No.5 was apologetic after the match.

“I’d like to thank my team for handling me, for tolerating me in the good and bad times today,” Djokovic said.

“I’m sure they didn’t have (a) blast with me going back and forth with them. My brother Marko was also here, I appreciate you coming here.

“It’s been an amazing week, and you guys made it even more special for me.

“I gave it my all today and all week to get my hands on the trophy.”

Djokovic tweaked his left hamstring during Saturday’s semi-final win over Daniil Medvedev but was able to push through the setback during the final against Korda.

The win was a major confidence boost for Djokovic as he seeks a 10th Australian Open crown later this month.

The victory also extended his winning streak in Australia to 34 matches stretching over five years.

Korda, the 22-year-old American son of Czech 1998 Australian Open champion Petr Korda, won over plenty of fans with an astounding effort against one of the game’s greatest ever.

The first set was an absorbing affair featuring numerous momentum swings and set points to both players.

Korda snared the crucial break to lead 5-4 but blew three set points at 40-0 to allow Djokovic to break and level the contest.

Djokovic was unable to convert his own set point at 6-5 up when Korda unleashed a powerful serve.

The tiebreak was even more intense, with Korda again choking at crucial moments.

Korda blew a 6-3 lead, with the third of those set points a horror shot into the net from close range when he had almost the whole court at his mercy.

Djokovic also had a moment to forget, with the 35-year-old framing a shot into the crowd during his own set point.

Korda finally came good on his seventh set point, with Djokovic unleashing his frustrations on his supporter box.

The second set was a tight affair, but Korda earned a Championship point on Djokovic’s serve.

Djokovic saved the match point with his nerveless overhead smash, and he came up with the goods to level the match.

The third set seemed headed for a tiebreak before Djokovic pounced when Korda tightened up late.

“I wish we could have gotten it done today, but there’s a long way to go and there were a lot of positives,” Korda said.

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