Novak Djokovic: 'We have not been in the same draw for a while'
by SIMONE BRUGNOLI | VIEW 3146
Novak Djokovic is back Or rather, he's coming back. The world number one put on probably his best performance of the year against France's Gael Monfils, beating him for the 18th time (in as many matches) of his career. Compared to the negative feelings in Belgrade, Novak was more confident and calm during the post-match press conference: "I felt very good on the court, the court was slower and heavier because of the rain, but that didn't give me no problem.
Gael is one of the fastest and most athletic tennis players on the circuit, I know him well and I was aware that it was impossible to close the exchange with him immediately. I had to dominate but at the same time be aggressive without taking too many risks, it's great to finish the match this way because before this match I was really far from my best.
With this performance I can say that I am on the right track and yes, this is my best match of 2022." Novak then spoke about the differences from a few days ago at the Serbian Open in Belgrade. He continued: "It is difficult to compare because in Serbia I was really very tired, I reached the deciding set in several matches and I did not offer the level I expected.
Physically it was tough. Now I have had 10 days to prepare better for the tournament and I feel better physically, too. in terms of tennis. I am happy that the work I have done has been useful and I am happy with the support I have received from the public.
Nadal on the same side of the draw? He is my biggest rival, but tennis is changing. There are more and more young players pushing and we have to give our best if we want to stay competitive. To think that we are still so strong is fantastic."
Nole Djokovic praises Rafa Nadal
Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal have had an intriguing tennis rivalry over the years.
Talking about how his chances are affected with Nadal being in his half of the draw, Djokovic said, “Of course, it affects, because he’s my greatest rival of all time. You’re right. I mean, I wasn’t thinking about this, but we have not been in the same draw for a while.
You know, things are changing. We have young players, and we are both trying to do our best to compete for the top spots of the world. I think we are still going strong, so it’s nice to see that”.