The disappointment for the missed Grand Slam will be difficult to digest, but Novak Djokovic has shown that he knows how to get up even in the most delicate moments of his career and will not easily give up the race for the Grand Slam record, which he shares with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
The Serbian will be able to console himself by looking with pride at the numbers that have marked his 2021 and winking at a season that is difficult for any athlete to replicate. Djokovic has in fact won three Majors (Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon, ed) and reached the final at the US Open by signing an impressive 27/28 in the matches played on the most important stages of world tennis.
The only one to beat him in a Grand Slam this year was Daniil Medvedev. The Belgrade has revealed that he still has no plans for this season finale, which could tie his fate once again to that of Federer and Nadal. Just like the Swiss and the Spaniard, with different motivations, we could see Djokovic on the pitch directly in 2022.
At the press conference, when asked to talk about his future commitments, the 20-time Grand Slam champion admitted: “To be honest, I don't have a plan, nothing at all. I don't know if I will play any tournaments or where.
Right now, my head is only here: in New York. Big 3? We want to continue to draw public attention to tennis as long as we can; I want to keep playing and try to win other Grand Slams and play for my country, these are my biggest motivations."
Federer appeared in a virtual event
Earlier this week, Roger Federer appeared in a virtual event along with wheelchair players Shingo Kunieda and Gordon Reid. During the event, the 40-year-old detailed how Navratilova’s idea of playing at the net changed the way players played the game.
He said, “Back in the day also, if you look at the women’s game, or the men’s game. If you look how Vilas and Borg had rallies, it was very much like back-and-forth, back-and-forth. Or Chrissie Evert also, very much back-and-forth.
And then, somebody like Navratilova comes in, and others, who always net rush, and then other players realise, ‘Oh, this also works.' ” The Swiss star mentioned this example to portray how others follow the idea, which ultimately changes the game.
“It only takes one person to give that idea to others, and then more and more do it,” said Federer. “And then you have the herd coming in and everyone trying it. This is when the game is truly changing. And then we’ll see that probably also, moving forward”.