Novak Djokovic, who is all set to take over the world number one spot from Rafael Nadal in Paris this week, spoke about the changes that tennis had seen over the years. Djokovic said that the top players, over their careers, have seen and undergone a lot of changes. The trio of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, have been the epitome of tennis for almost two decades.
“I believe that they both can say tennis has changed quite a bit, especially Roger (Federer) who has been playing on the top level for many years, more years than Rafa and myself”, said the US Open champion. “He(Federer) was a part of that generation of the serve‑and‑volley players where they were dominant, like Pete (Sampras), (Boris) Becker, (Stefan) Edberg, and (Goran) Ivanisevic”, continued Novak Djokovic.
Djokovic also pointed out that the current trend in tennis was to suit the game of the base-liners, and that it has forced many people to adapt to the new conditions. “Nowadays even the grass is a bit slower. The game is going around the players whose games are based on the baseline”, he said. “We all had to adjust to that in a way.”
Djokovic also spoke about the little additions that the top players have incorporated into their game, to compete at the very best of levels. “Obviously defensive skills (Rafael) Nadal is probably the best there is. It’s incredible the way he is getting the balls in all different surfaces, especially on the clay courts”, said Djokovic. “Then the variety that Roger has”, he continued, “But I think over the years, both of them, including myself and the other players, we needed and we felt that we had to improve our game. Now if you want to be on the top of the tennis, men’s tennis game, you need to have an offensive game”, he added.
“You need to have a very complete game on all the different surfaces. The ball is returned now better than it ever was. Makes it a little bit more difficult to get to the net”, said the Serbian. “But grass as the fastest surface makes you come to the net a little bit more.That’s what I’m trying to do as well to have that variety in my game”, he concluded.
All three of them are expected to be in action at the Paris Masters 1000, that will be the last masters 1000 tournament of the calendar, before the elite eight head off to compete at the ATP World Tour Finals, and mark an end to the 2018 season.