Wilander highlights how Djokovic's milestones are good for tennis

The former Swedish tennis player praised the Serbian champion for what he is doing in tennis

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Wilander highlights how Djokovic's milestones are good for tennis
© Kelly Defina / Stringer Getty Images Sport

The big favorite for the final victory at the Australian Open 2024 is (obviously!) Novak Djokovic. The Serbian champion, 10 times winner in Melbourne, is suffering from some physical problems with his wrist, suffered during the United Cup match against Alex De Minaur. The ATP No.1 has already shown in the past that he can win despite some small physical problems. And so, from 14 to 28 January 2024, the greatest tennis players on the planet will side on the hard-courts of Melbourne Park.

Mats Wilander, in an interview for Eurosport, praised the Serbian champion, underlining how his victories are good for tennis. "Djokovic already proved to us last year that if he takes the court he is ready to give his best, even with some small injuries.

He had an injury to his right thigh, but it just so happened that he was hitting his forehand with a violence that he had never managed to achieve in his career. He has always arrived with his head where his body may have limited him at times.

He is 36 years old, it is reasonable to think that he may suffer a little from his advancing age. In some situations he will perhaps try to shorten the exchanges, because he is unable to sustain prolonged exchanges at high intensity. He has been able to evolve his tennis over the years, thanks to the experience he has accumulated," he explained.

Djokovic© Kelly Defina / Stringer Getty Images Sport

Mats Wilander praises Novak Djokovic

Wilander then went in depth aboiut Nole's tennis: "He plays the backhand slice, uses the short ball, comes down to the net more. But the biggest thing we have to keep in mind about him is that he never needed to perform at his best in the first rounds, let alone two weeks before the tournament.

Take the Turin Finals, for example. He lost a battle with Sinner in the group and then left the crumbs, when he really counted, to Alcaraz in the semi-final and to Sinner himself in the final. He could reach his peak in the third round, the quarterfinals, or the final with a two set deficit.

But if he gets there, he's the best in the world, he's the best ever. It's his favorite tournament, on his favorite surface, in his favorite weather conditions. There are many young people who can beat him, the competition is there.

But he is Novak Djokovic, and frankly I hope he wins another title. I want him to shatter every record, to win against every prediction and analysis of journalists like me, against every hope of the fans, I want it because such feats take sport to a higher level, and the level of play rises exponentially. This is what all the fans ultimately want, so I say thank you and good luck," said Wilander.

The long-awaited draw for the main draw of the Australian Open has meanwhile reserved some surprises for Djokovic. Or more than surprise, we can talk about pitfalls. Nole will have a soft start with a qualifier, then there could be one of Popyrin or Polmans, in the second round. In the third round, opponents such as Gael Monfils and Andy Murray are looming, while in the fourth round Djokovic could meet the very young Ben Shelton. In the quarterfinals, theoretically, Nole could challenge Stefanos Tsitsipas or Taylor Fritz. Possible semi-final with Jannik Sinner and possible final with one of Carlitos Alcaraz or Daniil Medvedev.