While Roger Federer takes a break from Tennis and Rafael Nadal continues his domination over the clay court, former world number 1, Novak Djokovic is currently in Belgrade, Serbia, preparing for his comeback to competitive tennis. He is fervently practicing with his coach Marian Vajda for the Madrid and Rome Masters. The current world no. 12 spoke about his present situation recently
He admitted that he is still a step behind mentally and physically and has a long way to go. When talking about his struggles in his comeback, Djokovic admitted, ‘What I am living now, it’s not easy. In my case, not only injuries were there, but there were also some changes in my game caused by injuries.
Also I had many changes in my team, so everything affected my game. Now I feel well physically, I don’t have any pain but I am not as consistent as once. I am trying, but there is still something to be fixed in my game. What was routine before for me, now doesn’t work and I have first to get used to it and then change my game.
He knew that he had to be patient and his recovery will happen eventually. When he tried to come back, a few tournaments ago he realised he was still far away from his best.
He also said that the forced break allowed him more time for family. The Serbian stressed on the need for a balance in life. He was grateful for the support of his wife and family.
Now, he is focusing on getting back to the pre-injury situation. Injury is a fairly foreign situation for Djokovic as he was rarely injured. But he admitted that he was not the first player to be injured.
He cited the examples of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer who had long breaks due to injury and came back. Now, he said that he needs to follow this example. He admitted that he erred and came back earlier than needed as his desire outweighed his rationality.
‘Now I feel the post-surgery consequences. I shouldn’t have competed in the American swing. I didn’t hurt my hand, but I wasn’t ready for matches and I got losses that are the price to pay in my comeback.’
The comeback stories of Nadal and Federer has been nothing short of spectacular. While Federer took the Australian Open and Wimbeldon, Nadal went on to take the French Open and US Open last year. This year, the story seems pretty similar with the duo dominating again. Federer has already picked his first slam of the year with the Australian Open while Nadal looks set to win the Rolland Garros having already won his 11th Barcelona Open and Monte-Carlo Masters this year.