Novak Djokovic is an undisputed symbol in his country, so much so that many are convinced that the number 1 in the world can seriously embark on a political career after saying goodbye to tennis. The 33-year-old Serbian made a great start to 2021 by winning the Australian Open for the ninth time, inflicting a loud blow to Daniil Medvedev in a one-way final.
Yet another triumph at Melbourne Park also allowed him to win his 18th Major, moving only two points away from eternal rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. In the first rounds on clay, the Belgrade veteran seemed a little behind in terms of physical strength, a feeling that was reflected in the results.
Nole did not go beyond the second round in Monte Carlo, surprisingly eliminated by Dan Evans, while in front of the public friend of Belgrade he surrendered in the semifinals to a wild Aslan Karatsev. During a recent interview with 'Alo', Matej Sabanov - who hit the headlines for winning the doubles tournament in Belgrade with his twin Ivan - explained how Djokovic provides enormous support to his compatriots.
Sabanov on Novak Djokovic
"Novak Djokovic's support is something that cannot be described in words," Matej Sabanov said. "He has been an idol to us throughout our careers and his support means a lot to us.
Every piece of his advice is extremely valuable and it is a great honor for us to have the opportunity to learn from him." The Croat highlighted how Djokovic ensured that all players received the best of facilities along with living arrangements, which made them feel extremely relaxed and comfortable.
"Novak Djokovic invited us last year to come to Belgrade and make preparations for the next season there," Sabanov said. "He offered us the best conditions for training, and that is what we desperately needed.
After those preparations, he offered us to stay there and train there whenever we are not in tournaments. Because of all that, we felt like we were playing in our home. We were born and lived in Serbia until the age of 15, so the other Serbian players are our friends with whom we grew up."
Sabanov said. "Filip Krajinovic, Duci Lajovic, Nikola Cacic and Laslo Đere, these are all players from our generation that we know very well and with whom we have been friends since our junior days." World No.1 Novak Djokovic is sailing well ahead with his number of weeks as World No.1 record.
In early March 2021, he broke Roger Federer’s long-standing record of 310 weeks and now has stretched that lead to 318.