“Most Complete Player”: Junior World No.1 Opens Up on Training Experience With Novak Djokovic

Published 03/31/2021, 8:53 AM EDT
Tennis – Australian Open – Men’s Singles Final – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 21, 2021 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic reacts during his final match against Russia’s Daniil Medvedev REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake


Danish teenager Holger Rune is breaking new ground this year. Chiefly, the 17-year-old recently practiced with the World No. 1, Novak Djokovic, in Monte-Carlo. Naturally, the youngster was eager to share his experience with the world.

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having turned professional only last year, Rune has already qualified for his first ATP Tour-level tournament, Argentina Open. Afterward, he turned many heads by beating French World No. 33 Benoit Paire in Chile Open, making it into the quarterfinals.

Topping all, the Dane got an opportunity to play some balls with the 18-time Grand Slam champion. Interestingly, he sealed the deal to become the Serbian’s hitting partner via Instagram.

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Holger Rune on his training sessions with Novak Djokovic

Previously, Junior World No. 1 Holger Rune had been a hitting partner for the Top 8 players in the 2019 ATP Finals. Accordingly, the Dane mentioned that every time he trained with a Top 10 player, he drew inspiration and measured his tennis against them. However, with Novak Djokovic, he learned many other things.

“When I practiced with Djokovic, I understood that he’s not strong in tennis only,” Rune said“He is the most complete player I have ever meet both mentally and physically; I understood why many players have a hard time beating him.”

BELGRADE, SERBIA – JUNE 14: Novak Djokovic of Serbia reacts after the match against Alexander Zverev of Germany at the Adria Tour charity exhibition hosted by Novak Djokovic in June 14, 2020, in Belgrade, Serbia. (Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)

Rune, who dreams of becoming a World No. 1 himself, noted down the learnings from their session. Additionally, he looks forward to applying them right away.

“I left the court in Monte-Carlo with so much inspiration, and I wrote down a lot of things I want to improve in the next weeks. He showed me what it takes to become and be number one; it’s not just passion and good tennis, it’s so much more.”

Undoubtedly, the experience will go a long way with the Danish kid. To sum up, the top-ranked Junior said he aims to master the level of the Big Three.

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Where will Rune, Djokovic play next?

The 17-year-old Rune is currently ranked at 317 and would want to come closer to the Top 100 in 2021. Also, a qualification in a Grand Slam main draw would not be out of his mind.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 12: Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates winning a point during his final singles match against Rafael Nadal of Spain during day 10 of the ATP Cup at Ken Rosewall Arena on January 12, 2020, in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

Thus, Rune will need to play as many tournaments as possible to qualify for the French Open qualifiers. Only time will tell where we will see him next time.

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How excited are you to watch Djokovic and Rafael Nadal begin their clay season at Monte-Carlo Masters 2021? Before you answer that, take a look at how the Serbian is enjoying the clay time.

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WATCH: Rafael Nadal’s Intense Training With Carlos Moya Ahead of Monte-Carlo Masters 2021

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Purav Joshi

666 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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