Marion Bartoli thinks Novak Djokovic would enjoy a bigger popularity if he was an American and "would have a statue in every city." Djokovic is a record 24-time Grand Slam champion and has accomplished astonishing success in tennis but it's not a secret that he has never been as loved or popular as Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
Over the years, some have been pointing out that the reason might lie in the fact that Djokovic comes from Serbia. Bartoli, the 2013 Wimbledon champion, seemingly agrees with that claim. "Of course it’s not just the fact that he is Serbian.
We know very well that if Novak was American, he'd have a statue in every city. The fact that he is Serbian means that he is not as publicized. Coming from a small Eastern European country, with a recent painful past, affects one's popularity rating," Bartoli said on RMC.
Bartoli thinks Djokovic would be more popular if he was an American
After Djokovic won his 24th Grand Slam title, he was asked if he thought he could be mentioned as the greatest sportsman ever. “I leave that to you guys and all the others, whether I deserve to be a part of that debate.
One thing is a fact, though – if I wasn’t from Serbia, I’d have been glorified on a sporting level many years ago, especially in the west. But that’s part of my journey, I am grateful and proud to come from Serbia – because of that, all of these accomplishments are sweeter and even more fulfilling," Djokovic said.
Also, Djokovic suggested that he became a winner the moment he accomplished his tennis dreams. "I mean, that was already, you know, incredibly high ambition for someone coming from a family with no tennis tradition, for a boy in Serbia going through sanctions and embargo, war-torn country, and being part of the very expensive and unaffordable, unaccessible sport. The odds were pretty much against me and my family, but, you know, we did it," Djokovic said.
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