'Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal needed a bad guy', says former ATP star



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'Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal needed a bad guy', says former ATP star

Despite having won a lot in his career, Novak Djokovic has always suffered from his lower popularity compared to eternal rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. The number 1 in the world has repeatedly shown signs of intolerance towards fans, who perhaps do not forgive him for having broken a duopoly that has had very few equals in the history of modern sport.

The 33-year-old Serbian has narrowed the gap between the Swiss and the Spaniards, taking him to three points in the ranking of the Grand Slams won. If he were to win the Australian Open for the ninth time in his career, Nole would reach 18 Majors (as well as being the youngest of the Big 3).

Djokovic, who boasts a favorable head-to-head balance with Roger and Rafa, has a very good chance of becoming the player to have spent the most weeks at the top of the ATP rankings. Former Australian player Sam Groth recently wrote an article about Novak, who was not very lucky to be in the same era as Federer and Nadal.

Groth on the Big 3

"In any other era, I don’t think it would be this way," Sam Groth continued. "But Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal needed a bad guy, and they got Novak Djokovic." Moving on to Novak Djokovic’s recent injury-related controversy, Groth claimed that the World No.

1's history of exaggering his injuries will always haunt him. According to the Aussie, Djokovic’s critics don’t deride the Serb for no reason; Groth opined that Djokovic has, over time, built a reputation as someone who lies for no apparent reason.

"He (Novak Djokovic) wants his legacy to be the greatest player of all time, and for all this controversy to be forgotten," Groth remarked. "But he's doing himself no favors in that regard. So when he appears to be an innocent victim of circumstance, his past colors people's views.

Injuries usually demand sympathy rather than suspicion," the Aussie added. "This hasn’t just come out of nowhere; people don’t question the severity of your injury for no reason. Djokovic has a reputation for being the boy who cried wolf."

Many including Serena Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou also criticized Djokovic for this. Although the coach accepted that he was in immense pain, he mentioned that his injury was not that big due to which he should have thought of withdrawing from the major.

Uncle Toni looked quite unhappy with Djokovic, he highlighted that he would never question his pain. The former coach also believes that Djoker hides his pain much less than he should.