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Djokovic into Belgrade final

BELGRADE (AFP) – Novak Djokovic reached his first final of the year at the Serbia Open yesterday after recovering from a set down to beat Karen Khachanov 4-6, 6-1 6-2.

The world number one will face Andrey Rublev or Fabio Fognini as he bids for a third Belgrade crown, and the 87th title of his career.

For the third match in a row, Djokovic dropped the first set after losing his serve in the opening game, but the Serb stepped up his level in the second and third sets.

Djokovic beat the 26th-ranked Khachanov for the fifth straight meeting and sixth time in
seven matches.

The Belgrade event is only Djokovic’s third of 2022. He was deported from Melbourne after he entered the country unvaccinated. He was also barred from playing at the Indian Wells and Miami Masters over his controversial COVID-19 stance.