After winning the first set 6-1, things were looking good for the 23-time Grand Slam champion, but the eighth Wimbledon title started slipping from his hands in the second set, which he lost in the tie-break, and the third set that was dominated by the Spaniard who won it 6-1.
But Djokovic got back into the match in the fourth set. He broke his opponent's serve twice, blew kisses to one of the fans rooting against him, and won the fourth set 6-3 to force the decider in the 2023 Wimbledon final.
Having a really positive 5-1 record in a five-set Grand Slam finals, the Serb was hoping to get ahead early, but he couldn't do it after his break point in the second game of the deciding set remained unused.
On the contrary, he was broken in the third game of the fifth set, and he was really frustrated after that. A blend of tension, frustration, and sheer competitive spirit seemed to have collided within the Serbian, sparking an outburst that was as dramatic as it was unprecedented.
In a move that stunned viewers worldwide, Djokovic shattered his racquet against the net post on the Centre Court. The force of the strike left an indelible mark, both on the net post and in the annals of Wimbledon history.
This incident led to Djokovic being slapped with another warning for racquet abuse, after previously receiving a time violation. Smashing the racquet maybe helped him to relieve his emotions, but it certainly didn't help his physical state as Djokovic's wrist seemed to be hurting afterwards.