Novak Djokovic: ‘I felt it on my own skin in the past’

After his 20th Major crown at Wimbledon, Novak Djokovic went to Montenegro to join his family. World no. I trained at a resort in Herceg Novi before going to Tokyo, aiming for his first Olympic gold medal. When asked to compare 2021 to his previous notable years, Novak explained that it has already been one of the best seasons of his career, winning all three Majors and expecting more of the same in Tokyo and New York. Novak is the first player to win the season’s opening three Majors since Rod Laver in 1969, accomplishing that on three different surfaces to enter the record books. Djokovic claimed three Major titles in 2011 and 2015, failed to win Roland Garros in both seasons and changed that last month when he defeated Rafael Nadal and Stefanos Tsitsipas en route to his second crown in Paris. In Tokyo and New York, Novak will try to achieve the Golden Slam, only the second in tennis history after Steffi Graf in 1988.

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic is the man of the moment

Before boarding his plane for the Tokyo Olympics, Novak Djokovic sounded confident of his chances of winning the elusive gold medal at the quadrennial competition. “The schedule is really rough, but I feel that my preparations were good,” Djokovic said. “Also, I won a lot of matches recently, which always gives you extra confidence and energy boost. Playing for my country, it is the highest honour and privilege for me.” The 34-year-old has won the ATP Cup and the Davis Cup in previous years and has now set his sights on securing a gold medal for Serbia at the Olympics. “I am an individual athlete, rarely we have the occasion to be (in) a team,” added the Serb. “I am grateful because we were able to win the ATP Cup and Davis Cup, and I am missing (the) Olympic gold now. I have the highest ambitions in Tokyo, it is not a secret that I am aiming for the gold medal. Furthermore, Olympics are specific in terms of pressure, expectations and emotions – everything is different compared to other tournaments and I know that very well, I felt it on my own skin in the past,” said Djokovic. “Therefore, I will try to approach the Olympics in the same way that I approach other tournaments, so that I can stay focused on my goal.” Besides competing in the singles category, Novak Djokovic has decided to compete in the mixed doubles event too. He will be partnering with Nina Stojanovic. She has had an impressive season in doubles so far and the pair could cause some chaos in the Japanese capital. 

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