Novak Djokovic flew in famous Cristiano Ronaldo doctor for Australian Open title run

Novak Djokovic flew in famous Cristiano Ronaldo doctor for Australian Open title run

Novak Djokovic has reportedly flown in famous sports doctor Marijana Kovacevic in the latter stages of the Australian Open to help the Serbian deal with his ongoing hamstring injury. Djokovic admitted at the start of the tournament that he didn’t know how his body would hold up in Australia after aggravating a hamstring issue in Adelaide.

He appeared to struggle in the early rounds, needing multiple medical timeouts and said that he was taking the tournament one day at a time. But there appears to have been a shift in Djokovic’s condition in the previous rounds having demolished both Alex de Minaur and Andrey Rublev.

Djokovic showed no signs of the injury causing him any issues and admitted after both matches that he was feeling much better. That may well have coincided with the reported arrival of Dr Kovacevic, who has worked with a number of football superstars in the past.

Most notably, the sports doctor reportedly worked with Portuguese icon Ronaldo following his injury at the 2016 European Championships. Her patients also include the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Robin van Persie and Vincent Kompany among many others.

Former Liverpool star Yossi Benayoun was also treated by Dr Kovacevic and a few years ago admitted that she used “fluid from a human placenta” to treat an injury. “I have seen so many stories about the treatment on my hamstring, but, for me, there were never any worries,” he said back in 2009. “There were no animal parts used and no injections.

“The doctor has treated a lot of players and seems to be held in very high regard.

“She explained everything to me beforehand and told me she would be using fluid from a placenta that had come from a woman. Nothing went into the muscle itself. It was just a case of massaging the liquid on to the skin around the affected area and letting it get to work.

“It meant I was able to play again and help the team within a fortnight of suffering the injury.” Benayoun had suffered a hamstring tear earlier that season, which was expected to rule him out for around five weeks.


But the former Israel international was able to make his return to the field just two weeks later, scoring an equaliser against Manchester City on his return. Speaking after reaching Sunday’s final, Djokovic said he was “grateful” for the doctor stepping in to help his recovery.

“I am grateful that she came,” Djokovic said. “I’ve had a lot of treatments with a lot of people here in Melbourne. I tried to reach as many experts as possible.

“We also thought of Marijana, who traveled halfway around the world to come here. I am grateful for her therapies and her work, and I feel the benefits of her work.”

Published at Sat, 28 Jan 2023 05:00:00 +0000