'Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer are legends,' Novak Djokovic recalls

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'Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer are legends,' Novak Djokovic recalls

The 2020 US Open was the first Major event after the coronavirus breakout. Novak Djokovic was the only 'Big 3' player in the draw, competing at a Major without Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for the first time in a career!

Novak traveled to the USA without his family and a small team led by Goran Ivanisevic. Novak had been working hard on his game in Marbella in Spain, using the US Open balls and getting ready for the season's second Major. In his last tournament of the season in February, the Serb claimed the title in Dubai, and he looked for more of the same at Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in September.

Djokovic led Serbia towards the ATP Cup title in January. He conquered the eighth Australian Open crown in Melbourne a few weeks later over Dominic Thiem. With those points, Djokovic became world no. 1 ahead of Rafael Nadal. Speaking about Federer and Nadal in New York, Novak praised the great rivals.

He stated they would be missed in New York, even without the crowd in the stands. After their withdrawal, Djokovic felt he had to embrace the New York trip and defend the 'Big 3' honors against the rest of the field. Federer had to skip the US Open due to a knee injuru.

The Swiss played in the Australian Open semi-final against Djokovic before taking a break and undergoing two knee surgeries in February and May. Rafael Nadal decided to skip the American swing and remain at home in Mallorca.

Novak Djokovic was the only 'Big 3' player at the 2020 US Open. The Spaniard went home from Indian Wells when the pandemic started, and he started training only in May. Rafa picked clay for his preparations, and he was ready to return to action in Rome and Roland Garros in September.

Novak did not use his status as the favorite in New York, hitting the lineswoman with the ball and getting defaulted for the first time in a career. "It is strange because Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are the legends of our sport, and with or without crowds, we will miss them a lot.

I keep on playing professional tennis at this level because I want to reach more heights in the tennis world. I can not say it's the main reason I'm here, but it's one of them. First of all, I have to think about myself, my health, fitness, and whether my team is OK.

Once I checked that, I felt responsible as a top player to be here. Our sport needs to keep going," Novak Djokovic said.