Serbian tennis superstar Novak Djokovic admits playing in front of empty stands isn't something he loves but he would be open to playing behind the closed doors if that has to be done in order for tennis to resume. The season has been suspended since March 12 due to the coronavirus outbreak and the suspension will last until at least early-August.
Changes and adjustments are expected to happen once tennis returns and one of the main changes could be playing behind the closed doors. "I honestly don’t dream to play in front of empty stands. But It looks like that it’s going to be the reality of tennis.
We have to probably accept that if we want to have the tour continued then we have to be playing in certain restricted conditions that will at least allow us to play and compete,” said Djokovic in a conversation with Gustavo Kuerten, per Essentially Sports.
"I personally don’t play tennis for me only. If this is ideal? No, of course. My opinion is that I personally don’t play tennis for me only. Of course, I play for me and my family. I feel like tennis gives me so much joy and I love playing it and of course, I practice.
I don’t need to have people there every practice."
Novak Djokovic says domestic competitions are a great thing
The tennis season might be suspended but tennis has already returned via exhibition events and starting from next month, a series of domestic competitions will take place mostly across Europe.
Djokovic, a 17-time Grand Slam champion, is planning to host the Adria Tour from June 13 - July 5 -- the tournament will take place across four Balkan countries. "I think the advantage of tennis in these circumstances compared to may other sports like team sports is that you can play national level tournaments, regional level or continental tournaments if countries between themselves allow people and players to travel between the countries,” Djokovic said.
“So you can have these kinds of tournaments because you are individual athletes. Even social distancing is respected because you don’t need to touch each other." Novak Djokovic has confirmed that Dominic Thiem, Grigor Dimitrov and Alexander Zverev will feature the Adria Tour.