Novak Djokovic explains why his game has changed, and how he expects his game to fair over the course of the current season.
Novak Djokovic now has more than just one priority and feels the need to make sure that he can be the best version of himself. This includes making sure that he is able to be a father a husband as well as top class tennis player. The right balance has to be found for the former world number one and tennis is no longer his top priority.
The twenty nine year old is one of three players that have managed to hold all four Grand Slam titles in the same season. In 2016 he was almost impossible to beat and easily sat at the top of the World Rankings, until November last year when Andy Murray knocked him off his perch.
So far this season we haven’t seen much of his magic on the courts. He was surprisingly defeated in the second Round of the Australian Open. Losing his place in the competition to his opponent Denis Istomin. The dedicated father, also took an early exit from the Mexican Open losing to Nick Kyrgios, in straight sets, during the quarter finals.
Naturally this change in his game has sparked criticism from fans and the media, however he claims that it’s just a matter of making sure that he gets the balance right.
Prior to the birth of his son, tennis was always his number one priority, things have understandably, now changed for the Serbian star. Stating that he was grateful for his family and his new found role as a dad, he made clear that his aim now was to combine his roles in the best way possible. Ultimately he wants to achieve the best results in every aspect of his life, something that he knows will be challenging, but not impossible. Rather admirably, he is simply trying to be the best version of himself.
Niki Pilic, who has in the past mentored Djokovic, recently said that he has lost his tenacity and wasn’t sure if he could regain his position as world number one. Djokovic responded to this statement with respect and welcomed any opinions be they positive or not:
“I respect everyone’s opinion, everyone is entitled to their opinion, I accept the positive side. However, I do not look back at some of the stories that do not make any sense. I know who I am, where I came from, where I’m going and where I am. Each of us has a right to their own choices, the way they approach life, thinking and it should be respected.”
Although there may be a multitude of opinions when it comes to his game, Djokovic maintains that his time on the courts is not over yet. He vows to continue his game with the same love and passion that he had when he picked up his first racquet:
“Tennis makes me strong, and gives me great emotions and as long as I feel it, I’ll continue to play. Being the number one of the world is still one of the goals. I want to return to that position, but it is not the main priority.”
Author Lisa Wood
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