‘Novak Djokovic has always been much more complex’, says top coach

Novak Djokovic will not compete in the Indian Wells Masters 1000. After seeing the Grand Slam dream fade one step away from the finish line, the Serbian champion decided to skip the prestigious American event and spend more time with his family. Djokovic’s plans for the rest of 2021 are not yet clear. The Belgrade could play the ATP Finals in Turin and the Davis Cup, but as he specified in the press conference held at the end of the final lost at the US Open against Daniil Medvedev: “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 continue playing and try to win other Grand Slams and play for my country, these are my biggest motivations “. On 3 October, one of the greatest sportsmen in history turned 40. This is Zlatan Ibrahimovic, a great friend of Djokovic. The 20-time Grand Slam champion dedicated a beautiful greeting message to the Swede; a message that he was able to see thanks to MilanTv. Ibrahimovc’s response came through the AC Milan television channel. “First of all he is a Balkan head: when you explode you do well, when you get angry you give the best you can. You are more focused, more attentive. When Nole plays and gets angry he brings out the best of him, and so I feel alive. He is a complete athlete. The head, with little experience, is not there. With experience, the mentality grows. Nole is like me.”

Uncle Toni on Novak Djokovic

Toni Nadal, Rafael Nadal’s uncle and ex-coach, recently spoke at length about his nephew, the Big 3, the Next Gen and tennis in general on a Spanish podcast. And in one section of the interview, Toni tried to explain why Novak Djokovic isn’t as popular among the fans as his two big rivals. “It hurt him to finally arrive on the circuit when there was already a very strong rivalry between Roger and Rafa,” Toni said. “Federer and Nadal, they were two opposing styles, two different trajectories, and that made the fans very excited. It was therefore difficult to find a place at that time. After that, I also think Novak’s ego has hurt him,” Toni said. “Especially when it comes to having certain behaviors on the court that are incompatible with being number one.” Speaking of Rafael Nadal’s head-to-head matchup against Novak Djokovic, Toni explained how the Serb has always been trickier to strategize against than Federer. “With Roger everything was always easier because since 2006 we focused on starting almost all the points playing a high and strong ball to his backhand,” Toni said. “Djokovic has always been much more complex, we did not know how to read his game.”