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Australian Open Diary: Baker's Surgery Goes Well

Melbourne, Australia

Baker© Brian BakerBrian Baker has had surgery in Nashville

ATPWorldTour.com takes a look at the news and talking points at the Australian Open on the second Tuesday.

Baker On The Mend 
World No. 57 Brian Baker has undergone knee surgery in Nashville, under the watchful eye of Tennessee Titans head team doctor Dr. Burton Elrod. "All looks very good, the lateral meniscus was repaired and his ACL looks fine," Baker's agent, Kelly Wolf, told ATPWorldTour.com. The American will be in a knee brace for approximately six weeks, which he can remove when he is in bed so that he can bend his knee to a small degree. 

The 27 year old was forced to retire from his second-round match at the Australian Open against countryman Sam Querrey last week after tearing his lateral meniscus and suffering a locked knee when leading 7-6(2), 1-1.

Hewitt Sells Out Djokovic
Commentating in the Channel 7 booth on Novak Djokovic’s quarter-final win on Tuesday night, Lleyton Hewitt revealed the Serb had been recovering from his titanic effort against Stanislas Wawrinka with a mix of ice and hot baths.

Hewitt’s fellow commentator, Jim Courier, probed Djokovic about his recovery in the on-court interview, prompting Djokovic to turn to the commentary booth and joke, “I thought that was between you and me, Lleyton! I thought you were going to keep that a secret!”

He added, “I’ve done more than a few ice baths since my last match, that’s one of the ways to get the circulation flow through the muscles and get your body to recover faster. I saw Lleyton in a cold bath; we had a very nice chat… not like that!”

Djokovic Could Have Gone Another Five Hours
Following his four-set win over Tomas Berdych, Djokovic declared he would have been ready to play for five hours had the need arisen. The Serb took five hours and two minutes to edge Wawrinka 12-10 in the fifth set of their third-round clash and had around 39 hours to recover before playing the big-hitting Berdych, who was yet to drop a set in his Australian Open campaign.

“I felt good enough to go another five hours,” said Djokovic. “I have a great team of people around me that are doing the best they can in their expertise to make me feel ready physically, mentally, emotionally for every match, every challenge. Obviously, it's not easy to always be at your 100 per cent fitness. But after a five-hour match two days ago against Stan, I was quite convinced I could recover for this one.”

While Djokovic was loath to reveal all the secrets of his recovery, the 25 year old shed light on what motivated him to make the necessary changes to his regimen.

“At the start of my career I went through a lot of different kinds of challenges physically and mentally. Everybody makes mistakes. I was aware of the fact that I needed to improve because I wasn't feeling well, especially in the heat.  

“Maybe that's one of the reasons why I'm being so cautious and so committed when recovering, because I've had those bad experiences before in my career and I know what it feels like. I don't want to go through it again.”

Lucky 13
David Ferrer picked an opportune time to snap a 13-tie-break losing streak at the Australian Open. Needing to win the fourth-set tie-break to take his quarter-final with Nicolas Almagro into a fifth set, Ferrer won a tie-break for just the second time at Melbourne Park (2-13 career record). The Spaniard won the first tie-break he played at the Australian Open in 2004 but had lost the next 13.

Thirteen proved to be a lucky number Tuesday for the World No. 5, who improved his FedEx ATP Head2Head record against his countryman to 13-0 following the 4-6, 4-6, 7-5, 7-6(4), 6-2 win.

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