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Tennis | Olympics: Djokovic: “To be strange without Nadal or Federer”

Updated 07/22/2021 – 13:54

Novak Djokovic the road to the ‘Golden Slam’ starts this Saturday in Tokyo: the big four and the Olympic gold in the same season. No man has succeeded so far and the world number 1 can emulate the feat of Steffi Graf in 1988.

“I feel very good physically and mentally. I am prepared to do my best.”, says ‘Nole’, who was already bronze in Beijing and flagged for Serbia in London 2012.

I feel very good physically and mentally, I am prepared to do my best

Novak Djokovic, number 1 in the tennis world

Serbian is the great attraction of tennis in the Japanese capital before the casualties of Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Dominic Thiem, Denis Shapovalov or Roberto Bautista. It will premiere on the 24th against Bolivian Hugo Dellien.

“I do not have many experiences in the last 15 years without Rafa and Roger. It will be strange, but there are several players like Tsitsipas, Medvedev, … candidates to win a medal,” he acknowledged.

The number 1 in the world feels fortunate to be able to be in his third Olympic event. “It is a privilege to be part of the Serbian team at the Games for the third time. The Olympic experience is one of the most special. Being able to represent your country and be part of a team gives me a lot of energy. The feeling is different. I always represent my country, but this time I am not alone, the spirit of the team is with me on the track. It gives you wings to do better, “explained Djokovic at the press conference prior to the start of the competition.

Being part of a team gives you wings to do better

Novak Djokovic, number 1 in the tennis world

Although he has already commented on several occasions that his goal is Olympic gold, for now he prefers to focus on the next match. “I am in a great position, but I am only focused on the next challenge. In the past, there were many distractions. We will talk about the story if everything goes well at the end of the tournament,” he said.

Your dilemma over the absence of an audience

As for the absence of public in the stands, the winner of 20 Grand Slams, a circumstance with which he had been very critical, acknowledged that it made him doubt his presence in Tokyo. “I had doubts but in the end I decided to come and I am happy, because for me there are many things that are beautiful about the Games and I am trying to focus on them so that they inspire my game.“added the player. For him, the public is” one of the great reasons why I have continued to play at a professional level for so many years.

The Russian Daniil Medvedev, number two in the world, Stefano Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev are the rivals with the most name on paper and those who will try to overshadow the Serbian.

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