‘More Difficulties and More Pain’ – Novak Djokovic Displays Vulnerable Side in Rare Confession as He Aspires to Script History at French Open 2023

Published 05/30/2023, 8:35 AM EDT

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In a pre-tournament interview ahead of the French Open, the ‘Serbinator’ Novak Djokovic shared candid insights into the impact of age on his desire to win. For the very first time, during the English part of the press conference, Djokovic spoke openly about his slower recovery compared to ten years ago and admitted that age is a factor. Earlier, when such topics would come up, he would often make a joke or avoid going in depth. However, it was different this time around!

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With a career spanning over two decades and numerous accolades under his belt, Djokovic’s words shed light on the evolving challenges he faces as he strives to maintain his motivation and hunger for success. Now aged 36 and regularly asked to monitor his physical shape, Djokovic doesn’t shrug off these questions anymore. 

A changing physical landscape for the ‘Djoker’

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The Serbian tennis legend admitted that his body is feeling the wear and tear of a long career, even if he feels that he still has fuel left in the tank. “I want to believe that I am ready,” Djokovic said. “Grand Slams are my priority; they motivate me the most. The best possible news is that I don’t have any physical issues, knock on wood,” continued the 2016 and 2021 French Open winner, who struggled with his elbow during the clay court season.

During his interview with Tennis Majors, the Djoker said, “I don’t have any physical issues that worry me. That’s the most important thing for me. You know, I want to feel good coming into a Grand Slam. I mean, that was the case with Australia this year.” He battled through the hamstring tear injury and was noticeably using a bandage on his thigh to help stabilize the hamstring during his Melbourne triumph. Despite the injury, he went on to win the 2023 Australian Open. 

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While some athletes may experience a decline in motivation as they age, Djokovic has shown no signs of slowing down. Instead, he has evolved and adapted his approach to the game, finding new ways to stay motivated and maintain his competitive edge.

These physical changes pose a new set of challenges for Djokovic, testing his resilience and determination to overcome the obstacles that come his way. Djokovic is looking to win a record-breaking 23rd Grand Slam title at the French Open, and his only active rival, Rafael Nadal, is out of this tournament.

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The persistence of pain in The Nole’s quest for greatness

For Djokovic, the pursuit of greatness extends beyond personal achievements. He has set his sights on surpassing the records of his esteemed rivals, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, in terms of Grand Slam titles won. This ambition acts as a driving force, pushing Djokovic to remain at the top of his game and maintain his unwavering commitment to excellence.

Djokovic’s hunger for success has been a recurring theme throughout his career. He often referred to himself as “the wolf hungry for more,” signifying his relentless pursuit of excellence. Despite his remarkable achievements, the 10-time Australian Open champion does not rest on his laurels. He remains hungry for victories and continues to push himself to new limits year after year. While acknowledging the physical changes and challenges that come with age, Djokovic refuses to let them define his trajectory. 

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Watch This Story: Former French Open Winner Believes Novak Djokovic is Yet to Reach the Level of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal

As the years pass and Djokovic, now in his mid-thirties, continues to dominate the tennis world, it’s a valid question to ponder. Does the fire to succeed diminish as athletes grow older? What do you think?

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Written by:

Bhavani

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Bhavani Singh is a Tennis Editor at EssentiallySports. After completing her Masters in Visual Communication, she stepped into the world of content creation. Having edited over 3000+ posts across various domains, Bhavani decided to step into the dynamic world of sports journalism.
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Edited by:

Tony Thomas

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