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No medal for Djokovic for third straight Games

Last updated on: July 31, 2021 16:02 IST
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Spain's Carreno Busta beats listless Djokovic for bronze

Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta celebrates beating Serbia's Novak Djokovic in the Olympics men's tennis bronze medal match, at Ariake Tennis Park, in Tokyo, on Saturday.

IMAGE: Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta celebrates beating Serbia's Novak Djokovic in the Olympics men's tennis bronze medal match, at Ariake Tennis Park, in Tokyo, on Saturday. Photograph: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta claimed the bronze medal in the tennis men's singles at the Tokyo Games on Saturday, triumphing 6-4, 6-7(6), 6-3 over a listless Novak Djokovic, a day after the Serbian was stopped in his bid to complete a historic "Golden Slam".

 

The world number one had arrived in Tokyo aiming to become the first man to win all four majors and an Olympic gold medal in the same calendar year. But that quest came to an end after he was beaten by fifth-ranked German Alexander Zverev in Friday's semi-final.

Novak Djokovic breaks his racket during the third set against Pablo Carreno Busta.

IMAGENovak Djokovic breaks his racket during the third set against Pablo Carreno Busta. Photograph: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Saturday's loss to Carreno Busta marks Djokovic's third appearance and second defeat in a singles bronze medal match.

He won the bronze at the Beijing Games in 2008 before losing to Argentina's Juan Martin Del Potro in London four years later.

The 34-year-old had a chance to go for yet another bronze on Saturday in the mixed doubles, partnering Nina Stojanovic against Australian pair Ash Barty and John Peers. However, the 20-times Grand Slam champion will leave the Olympics without a medal for the third Games in succession after pulling out the final with a shoulder injury.

The Serbian won a singles bronze medal in Beijing in 2008, but failed to earn a place on the podium at the London, Rio and now Tokyo Olympics.

Brazilians save four match-points to earn bronze in women's doubles

Brazil's Laura Pigossi and Luisa Stefani react after winning their bronze medal match against the Russian Olympic Committee's Elena Vesnina and Veronika Kudermetova.

IMAGE: Brazil's Laura Pigossi and Luisa Stefani react after winning their bronze medal match against the Russian Olympic Committee's Elena Vesnina and Veronika Kudermetova. Yara Nardi/Reuters

Brazilians Laura Pigossi and Luisa Stefani saved four match-points against Wimbledon runners-up Veronika Kudermetova and Elena Vesnina to snatch the Olympic women's doubles bronze medal.

The Brazilians, with tears in their eyes at the end of the match, crowned a stellar week, coming from a set down and trailing 5-9 in the tie-break to win six consecutive points and beat the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) pair 4-6, 6-4, 11-9.

It was Brazil's first Olympic tennis medal.

"We knew we had given it everything and we have all this emotion now," said Stefani, ranked 23rd in the world in doubles.

"From 0-0 in the tie-break to when we were 9-5 behind we believed we could make it all the time."

"We had this feeling of confidence throughout and now there is this feeling of pure happiness of having reached a goal," she said.

"This medal is historic for Brazil. It is also a responsibility but also a motivation for us."

Vesnina, bidding to win her second Olympic medal after gold in the women's doubles in 2016, can make amends when she teams up with Aslan Karatsev against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Andrey Rublev in an all-ROC mixed doubles final on Sunday.

Russian athletes have been banned from using their flag or anthem over the country's doping scandals. They are identified as athletes of the Russian Olympic Committee.

Mektic-Pavic give Croatia men's doubles gold

Gold medallists Mate Pavic and Nikola Mektic of Croatia celebrate on the podium.

IMAGE: Gold medallists Mate Pavic and Nikola Mektic of Croatia display their men's doubles medals. Photograph: Edgar Su /Reuters

Croatia's Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic beat compatriots Marin Cilic and Ivan Dodig 6-4, 3-6 (10-6) in the Olympics men’s doubles final on Friday to win their country’s first gold medal in the sport.

It was also Croatia’s first silver after three bronze medals at previous Games -- two at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and one at Athens 2004.

Mektic and Pavic, who had not played as a pair before this year, also won the Wimbledon title this month, and Mektic admitted that playing his countrymen in the final had been "a little tricky".

The silver medallists expressed mixed feelings about their loss.

"We are super proud even though it's a mixed emotion with being so close (to the medal) and not being able to hold the gold medal," Cilic said.

New Zealand's Marcus Daniell and Michael Venus won the bronze by beating Austin Krajicek and Tennys Sandgren of the United States 7-6(3), 6-2 to secure their country’s first ever Olympic tennis medal.

New Zealander Anthony Wilding won a bronze medal as part of a combined Australasian team in 1912.

"We have made a little bit of history today," Daniell said, adding that the pair had had to endure extreme heat while sharing a small room in the athletes' village which had helped strengthen the bond between them.

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