Novak Djokovic’s continuing run at a potential ninth Australian Open trophy hangs by a thread as the Serb early Saturday revealed a serious muscle tear problem.

The injury could cost the world No. 1 his Sunday date in the fourth round with powerful Canadian Milos Raonic.

With fans in the stands now off the menu at the event for the next five days due to a lightning statewide COVID-19 lockdown, Team Djokovic must concentrate on healing their top seed..

Djokovic made a comeback to subdue Taylor Fritz 7-6(1), 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 6-2, thanks in great part to an injury timeout and a 30-minute break in play.

But that close call might not be repeatable:

“I know it’s a tear of the muscle,” he said of the right side issue. “I don’t know if I’ll manage to recover in less than two days.

“I don’t know if I’m going to step out onto the court or not – let’s see what happens.”

Djokovic confessed: “I honestly don’t know how I won the match. I’m very proud, at the same time sad and worried.

“There is definitely something serious happening with my injury.

“I don’t have much time to recover, and I’m definitely not training tomorrow. I’ll evaluate further (ultrasound) more with doctor and medical team so they can  prescribe best possible treatment if I’m to have the slightest chance to go out in less than 48 hours.”

Main photo:- Novak Djokovic receives on court treatment for a torn oblique during third round win over Taylor Fritz. by – Tennis Australia/ ROB PREZIOSO

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