Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem, Dimitrov play football in Belgrade



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Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem, Dimitrov play football in Belgrade

The first edition of the Adria Tour will take place at the Novak Djokovic Tennis Center in Belgrade on Saturday and Sunday, with eight players fighting for the title on Sunday night. The Serbian capital welcomes one of the strongest line-ups during the coronavirus pandemic, with three top-10 players and another ATP Finals champion.

Grigor Dimitrov was the first to arrive in Serbia, followed by Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev who will challenge Novak in front of his fans in the next couple of days. Djokovic, Zverev, Dimitrov and Thiem had a chance to play football together, forming a team with Dusan Lajovic, Viktor Troicki, Damir Dzumhur and Filip Krajinovic to defeat the group of artists 3-2.

Dzumhur, Krajinovic and Dimitrov scored goals for the white squad, with everyone enjoying the match, sharing jokes and laughing. On Friday, players had a chance to practice or entertain the crowd in the exhibition matches, shaping up their games and hoping to bring their best on Saturday and Sunday.

Eight players will fight in two groups and it should be interesting to see who is in the best shape and form, with Djokovic, Dimitrov, Thiem and Zverev working hard in the previous weeks and, in Thiem's case, already playing some matches.

Novak Djokovic has been the player of the season in the first two months, leading Serbia towards the inaugural ATP Cup and defending the title at the Australian Open.

From the fourth round, Djokovic took down Diego Schwartzman, Milos Raonic and Roger Federer in straight sets, setting the title clash against Dominic Thiem who gave his best to challenge the seven-time champion. The Austrian led two sets to one before Novak bounced back to claim a 6-4, 4-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 triumph in three hours and 59 minutes, earning the 17th Major and regaining the ATP throne.

World no. 3 Dominic Thiem didn't make a good start of the season, suffering two losses at the ATP Cup before finding his A-game in Melbourne, overpowering Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev in the quarters and semis to advance into the third Major final, the first outside Paris.

Despite giving his everything, Dominic fell in five sets to settle with the runner-up prize and pass Roger Federer on the ATP ranking list. In Rio de Janeiro, Thiem lost in the quarter-final to Gianluca Mager in what has been the last official match for him so far.

Alexander Zverev was far from his best at the ATP Cup, improving his tennis at the Australian Open for the first Major semi-final, losing to Dominic Thiem after almost four hours, hoping for more good tennis in Belgrade this weekend.