Novak Djokovic wasn't really impressed with a reporter referring to Jannik Sinner and Holger Rune as "kids" as the Serb highlighted that they are both over 18 years old and therefore grown adults. After beating 20-year-old Rune in his ATP Finals opener, Djokovic suffered a three-set loss to Jannik Sinner in his following match in Turin.
On Friday, Djokovic defeated Hubert Hurkacz and he also needed Sinner to beat Rune in order to reach the semifinal in Turin. When asked what battle he expected between "kids" Sinner and Rune, Djokovic said: "Well, I think it's not nice to call them kids because they are not kids.
They are above 18, so you're officially not a kid anymore."
Djokovic: Nothing strange in younger players wanting to beat me
After losing to Djokovic in their first three meetings, Sinner finally experienced how it feels to beat the Serb after claiming a 7-5 6-7 (5) 7-6 (2) win in Turin.
Right from the start, it was evident that Sinner was very determined and motivated to finally end on the winning side against Djokovic. In his post-match press conference, Djokovic acknowledged that he noticed that but also underlined there was nothing strange there.
"It's normal. I mean, I don't think there is anything strange about that. It's normal they want to beat me. I was experiencing for already these kind of feelings that every single player is motivated even more to beat me anywhere I play in the world.
That's okay. It's absolutely normal. They want to take the scalp. Jannik did that tonight. It's normal to lose some of the matches like this, but I have to be content with the fight, fighting spirit. I managed to make a comeback from set down, break down in the third set.
Played in really challenging and difficult conditions on the court today. I'm proud of the fight that I put in. It just wasn't enough for the win," Djokovic explained.