Novak Djokovic in hot water after being passed 'secret note' by his coaches during Australian Open
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Novak Djokovic has found himself in hot water after footage went viral of the tennis star being passed a secret note by his team at the Australian Open.
The Serbian defeated Grigor Dimitrov to advance to the fourth round of the Australian Open over the weekend.
However, eagle-eyed fans potentially caught him red-handed during his second-round matchup against Enzo Couacaud.
Yahoo Sports reports, that the video, which was posted to TikTok, shows a member of Djokovic’s coaching staff attaching a note to a water bottle before handing it to a supervisor.
The bottle was passed along to the tennis star who read the note before drinking the contents of the bottle.
While it’s not entirely known what the note contained, it could have simply been instructions on how the drink should be consumed, however, it has raised questions.
Some fans have questioned whether Djokovic was receiving illegal coaching.
Coaching during tennis matches had previously been outlawed, however, recent changes have allowed for communication between teams and their players.
The new rules permitted coaching if players were at the same end of the court, or through hand signals at the opposite end.
Nothing in the new ruling mentioned anything about written instructions.
The new rules were put into full effect during the clash between Stefanos Tsitsipas and Jannik Sinner with the Italian receiving advice from his box on how to deal with the Greek’s serve.
As for Djokovic, fans hilariously speculated exactly what instruction he was receiving.
One wrote: “Move to a 4-4-2 formation.”
Another said: “Cheat codes to win the match. R2, R2, L1, R2, LEFT, DOWN, RIGHT, UP, LEFT, DOWN, RIGHT, UP.”
A third commented: “He’s just got some Prime from Wakey!”
A fourth quipped: “Note said: Can you get milk on your way home.”
It’s not the first time the Serbian has found himself in drink bottle-related drama.
Last year his team were spotted attempting to block the view from cameras as they prepared a drink at the Paris Masters in November.
However, Aussie veteran John Millman shut down any such suggestions that the team were attempting to bend the rules.
He said: “A proper ridiculous notion that something is up, stadium full, cameras everywhere, drinks mixed in players box ... I mean use a little logic here, maybe just maybe they don’t want to give the edge to anyone.
“To add to that, inside a locker room you see a players team always making drinks, in unmarked bottles and put in the fridge. Training programs, supplement intake etc is trade secret.”