Novak Djokovic Reiterates Admiration for Wheelchair Tennis Players at French Open 2020

Published 10/09/2020, 4:13 AM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – October 3, 2020 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his third round match against Colombia’s Daniel Elahi Galan Riveros REUTERS/Christian Hartmann TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY


Novak Djokovic has time and again expressed his admiration towards wheelchair tennis and the players who put up entertaining matches at Grand Slams. Djokovic shares a nice camaraderie with Dylan Alcott, who is one of the greats in wheelchair tennis, and several others.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

On Thursday, he appreciated their efforts once again. The Serbian superstar posted a video from a wheelchair doubles match at the French Open 2020, featuring Gustavo Fernandez and Shingo Kunieda.

Djokovic highlighted the difficulty of playing tennis while in a wheelchair, as the players have a lot more to focus on than just hitting the ball.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Such an admiration for wheelchair tennis players. Truly inspiring to see them battle on the tennis court. How do they move the wheels, turn and hit the ball at the same time…? Truly amazing!” Djokovic tweeted.

Djokovic’s respect for wheelchair tennis players

A few weeks ago, at the US Open 2020 as well, Djokovic met Fernandez and interacted with him about the sport. In a post on social media, Djokovic spoke about his discussion with Fernandez and his further learning about wheelchair tennis.

“Wheelchair tennis players are truly an inspiration for me. It’s amazing how they manage to execute the shots while constantly having one hand on the wheel.” Djokovic said back then.

I have tried several times to play wheelchair tennis, and it’s super hard. Big admiration and respect to Gustavo and all the wheelchair tennis players,” he expressed.

Serbia’s Novak Djokovic in action during his quarter final match against Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta REUTERS/Charles Platiau

When Novak Djokovic played wheelchair tennis with Dylan Alcott

Back at the Australian Open in 2017, Djokovic took part in a pre-tournament activity with Alcott. The Australian player challenged Djokovic to a few rallies. He raised the stakes when he asked Djokovic to get in a wheelchair and play tennis with him.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Djokovic accepted the challenge as Alcott guided him on how to play in a wheelchair. Djokovic admitted he was struggling to cope up, saying, “This is the hardest workout I’ve had in my life.”

He then told Alcott, “I have so much admiration for you. Now even more.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

At the French Open 2020, Djokovic plays Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semi-final on Friday. He is two wins away from his 18th Grand Slam title but could face Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s final.

 

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Aayush Majumdar

1006 articles

Aayush Majumdar is a NASCAR content strategist, a Tennis Writer, and a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. He is well-tenured as a tennis and NASCAR writer, with over 900 articles across both sports. After pursuing a Post Graduate program in Sports Management, Aayush explored various roles in Sports Media, including a Sports Reporting role at a leading English daily.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT