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I'll learn from disqualification but can't promise to change: Djokovic


Dominic Thiem holds aloft the US Open trophy

Dominic Thiem holds aloft the US Open trophy

Getty Images

Dominic Thiem holds aloft the US Open trophy

Novak Djokovic has taken his shock disqualification from the US Open as a "big lesson" but admitted he cannot guarantee he will not do the same thing again.

The World No.1 spoke at a press conference in Rome for the first time since he was dramatically ejected from the year's second Grand Slam for hitting a line judge in the throat with a ball struck in annoyance during his fourth-round clash with Pablo Carreno Busta.

It is not the first time Djokovic has expressed frustration in a similar way - he whacked a ball angrily against the advertising hoardings earlier in the same match - and he accepted that the fire that makes him a champion can also come out in negative ways.

He said: "Of course as anybody else I'm working mentally and emotionally as hard as I'm working physically, trying to be the best version of myself on the court and off the court.

"I understand that I have outbursts and this is the personality and the player I have always been. I obviously went through ups and downs in my career in managing to control my emotions but you're alone out there, it's a lot of intensity, a lot of pressure and you have to deal with all of that so sometimes situations like this happen.

"I cannot promise that I will never, ever do anything similar to that. I'm definitely going to try my best that something like that never happens again, obviously, but anything is possible in life. I'm going to take this in as profound as possible as a big lesson."

Djokovic argued his case for several minutes with tournament officials after the incident before accepting his fate and leaving Flushing Meadows.

He contacted the affected line judge, Laura Clark, to check on her condition and insisted he has now moved on.

He said: "Of course it was very hard for me to accept right after it happened. For a couple of days I was in shock and I was shaken.

"Of course it could have happened earlier in my career, it could have happened to many players. It was just unfortunate it hit the line umpire in a very awkward place.

"There was a lot of speculation about whether it was deserved. I accepted it, I moved on.

"I checked on Laura after the match, she said that she was fine. I felt really sorry to cause the shock and drama to her because she didn't deserve that."

The upside for Djokovic was that it gave him more time to prepare on clay for this week's Italian Open and the French Open starting on September 27.

Dominic Thiem, meanwhile, defeated Alexander Zverev and his own anxieties in a dramatic US Open final to win his first Grand Slam title.

The 27-year-old became the first man for more than 70 years to recover from two sets to love down to win the final in New York, putting on a display of mental and physical resilience to prevail 2-6 4-6 6-4 6-3 7-6 (6).

Both men served for the match in a nerve-shredding fifth set but in the end it needed the first ever deciding tie-break in a US Open men's final to divide them.

The nerves for both men were palpable with so much at stake but it was Thiem who finally stumbled across the finish line on his third match point despite barely being able to walk.

It was the Austrian's fourth Grand Slam final after two losses to Rafael Nadal at the French Open and one to Djokovic in Australia, and he admitted: "I wanted this title so much, and of course there was also in my head that if I lose this one, it's 0-4.

"I achieved a life goal, a dream of myself."

Belfast Telegraph