Novak Djokovic clocked his 300th Grand Slam win Sunday, playing through pain from an abdominal injury that nearly forced him to pull out of the Australian Open to oust Milos Raonic and make the quarter-finals.

The world number one took to the court despite suggesting his title defence might be over on Friday after sustaining the injury in a thrilling five-setter against Taylor Fritz.

He battled on against giant Canadian Raonic on a fan-less Rod Laver Arena, grinding through 7-6 (7/4), 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 to set up a clash with sixth seed Alexander Zverev.

But Djokovic said if it wasn’t a Grand Slam, he would have pulled out.

“No preparations, basically, for this match. I used every single hour I had since the last match against Taylor to recover and put myself in a position where I have a possibility to compete,” he said.

“If it was any other tournament than a Grand Slam I would retire and withdraw,” he added.

“I didn’t know before I finished my warm up today, three hours before, whether I would play or not.”

Djokovic’s win was his 300th at a Slam, only the second player in history to reach the mark after Roger Federer, on 362.

It kept him on track for an 18th Grand Slam title in his bid to close in on the 20 held by the Swiss great and Rafael Nadal, who plays on Monday.

He has already won a record eight times in Melbourne, the scene of his maiden Slam triumph in 2008, where he remains unbeaten since his shock loss to South Korea’s Hyeon Chung in the 2018 round of 16.

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