World No.2 Daniil Medvedev triumphed in an Australian Open classic overnight, but his post-match comment about Novak Djokovic still managed to draw boos from the crowd.
Medvedev summoned up astonishing reserves of spirit and quality to win a classic quarter-final 6-7 (4-7), 3-6, 7-6 (7-2), 7-5, 6-4 after nearly five-hours on court against the impressive Felix Auger-Aliassime on Wednesday.
'RIDICULOUS POINT': Iga Swiatek brilliance leaves Aus Open in awe
The Russian was two sets down against the ultra-talented Canadian, before making life harder for his opponent and stepping up the tempo.
However, Medvedev did have some inspiration for his comeback when he was staring down the barrel of a quarter-final exit.
In his post-match speech with Jim Courier, Medvedev was asked about what was going through his mind having comeback from what appeared to be oblivion.
Medvedev pre-warned the Australian Open crowd: "I don't know if people will like it," before explaining his mentality as "What would Novak do?"
The cheeky moment had the Rod Laver Arena crowd both laughing and pantomime booing.
Serena Williams' coach Patrick Mouratoglou commented on social media that the phrase should be changed to: "What would Daniil do?" after his epic win.
Now I think we can say: "What would Daniil do?" #savingmatchpoint
— Patrick Mouratoglou (@pmouratoglou) January 26, 2022
While the Australian Open crowd didn't take too kindly to hearing Djokovic's name, Medvedev recovered quickly.
"Because he is one of the greatest champions, or Rafa [Nadal] or Roger [Federer]," he added.
The Russian drew some cheers after mentioning the other two champions sitting on 20 grand slams.
Daniil Medvedev's Australian Open epic
While the crowd may have not been too receptive to Medvedev's Djokovic comment, the Russian explained the 20-time grand slam champion has had an important influence on his attitude to "fight to the last point".
"I have to take what I can from the best," Medvedev added after the match.
"Rafa (Nadal), Roger (Federer), they also have done it so many times but I've played more times with Novak.
"Some matches I watched win him the grand slams, being two sets to love down with (Stefanos) Tsitsipas and (Lorenzo) Musetti in Roland Garros.
"During all the matches, as soon as I was done a little bit, I was like, 'Just be like Novak. Show him that you are better'.
"It won't work every time, because again, he (Auger-Aliassime) had a match point."
Medevdev, who reckoned he had simply not known what to do when the young Canadian's forehand tracers zipped past him, admitted: "He was playing insane, like better than I have ever seen him play. It was unreal.
"So, third set, I had zero confidence in myself and in the outcome of the match."
Yet after a blistering first serve saved the match point in the fourth set, Djokovic eventually overcame the ninth seed in a marathon four hours and 42 minutes.
Medvedev, who broke through for his maiden grand slam title win when he upset Djokovic at last year's US Open, is now inspired by a new goal.
For he's now just two wins away from becoming the first man in the Open era to win his second grand slam in the next major tournament after his first.
Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.