Novak Djokovic: 'I used to freeze up whenever I made...'

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Novak Djokovic: 'I used to freeze up whenever I made...'

To see it to believe it. Monumental disaster of No. 1 Novak Djokovic. Unexpected because he had returned to the competition with a convincing performance to beat the Italian Jannik Sinner. And since he had a good player in front of him, Dan Evans, but who has turned his back on clay in his career.

Djokovic, 33 years old and unbeaten in his 10 previous games this season including the Australian Open title, was shipwrecked against the Briton, who at 30 lived an incredible moment of glory, on a surface where he had not won since Godó 2017 before appearing in Monte Carlo, which in ATP has 7 victories in 20 games.

Dan Evans hunted down an unknown Djokovic, making one mistake after another and with no ability to react. He beat the English 6-4 and 7-5 in 2h.06. Belgian David Goffin will be measured in the quarterfinals, who knocked down German Alexander Zverev 6-4, 7-6 (7).

He racked up ‘Nole’ 45 unforced errors, not improving his image even after lifting two breaks down in the opening set or sending 3-0 in the second. Crestfallen, without joy, he ended up paying for a horrible day, one of the worst of his career.

Zero energy, a drastic change from Wednesday to Thursday. Djokovic was down 0-3 and 2-4, but managed to balance the bad start. But the 4-4 did not take him out of a negative dynamic. Continuous dialogues with his bench, where coach Marian Vajda was, his gaze always fixed on the ground below.

Novak Djokovic has often spoken about how meditation and visualization have played an integral role in his success. Now, one of the techniques Djokovic uses to prepare himself for a match has been captured on video, thanks to Eurosport journalist Benoit Maylin.

Novak Djokovic on the role of visualization in his success

"I've done so much mindful meditation that now my brain functions better automatically, even when I'm not meditating," Novak Djokovic wrote. "I used to freeze up whenever I made a mistake; I was sure that I wasn't in the same league as the Federers...

Now, when I blow a serve or shank a backhand, I still get those flashes of self-doubt, but I know how to handle them: I acknowledge the negative thoughts and let them slide by, focusing on the moment," he added. "That mindfulness helps me process pain and emotions.

It lets me focus on what's really important." The Serb had taken a break to recover from the abdominal injury he sustained during the year's first Grand Slam.