'Novak Djokovic takes a lot of time from the rival', says young ace
by SIMONE BRUGNOLI | VIEW 6535
A few weeks ago, Novak Djokovic received the go-ahead to travel to Australia next month. In fact, the local government has lifted the three-year ban that weighed on the Serb's head, the protagonist of a bad soap opera at the beginning of the year.
Indeed, the 35-year-old tennis player from Belgrade had been expelled from the country due to his vaccination status and had not been able to participate in the Australian Open. For the same reason, the former world number 1 had also had to give up the US Open and all the North American Masters 1000.
However, 2022 was satisfactory for him thanks to triumphs at Wimbledon and at the Atp Finals in Turin, not forgetting the victory at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia. Despite a season heavily conditioned by his decision not to get vaccinated against the Coronavirus, Nole managed to close the year in the Top 5 and reiterated that he is still the man to beat.
The 21-time Grand Slam champion will kick off his 2023 by competing at the Adelaide ATP 250, before going on the hunt for his tenth trophy at Melbourne Park. Invited to the exhibition organized in Saudi Arabia, Mats Wilander stated that Djokovic will be the big favorite in the AO (which will start on January 16).
Present in Saudi Arabia, Mats Wilander answered questions from our Tennis Italiano colleagues. According to the Swede, Novak Djokovic is the big favorite for the Australian Open, but there is still a risk. "I see Nole as the big favourite, ahead of Medvedev, who is at his best on the hard courts, and Nadal, the defending champion.
The only thing that can betray Djokovic is his desire to do too much, to show, after everything that happened to him in Australia a year ago, that this tournament is his home".
Vallejo reflects on Djokovic
Daniel Vallejo, a rapidly rising star on the junior men's tennis circuit, recently praised Novak Djokovic for his great conduct towards him.
"The best thing about that week was training with Djokovic, warming up with him before his matches," Daniel Vallejo said of his experience. "He was very kind to me, very charismatic, he showed why he is one of the best on the planet.
He made me feel privileged." The 18-year-old highlighted that Djokovic has the ability to be very aggressive even without hitting the ball hard, while also giving his opponents very little time to react. "There is no one that I look at exactly, but the closest thing would be Djokovic, except for the huge differences.
He also stands well inside the court and, without hitting him so hard, he manages to be very aggressive because he takes a lot of time from the rival," Vallejo explained.