Novak Djokovic has won 6 grand slams and 6 grand slams since 2014. However, with the recent losses and injuries, times are not as rosy as they were at the end of last year. With the rise of players like Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka, the fight for number 1 has intensified.
The pressure has prompted Djokovic to admit that grand slams are no longer his priority. In the press conference at Belgrade, he was quoted as,”I don’t want to think about winning titles and being the number one any more in order to avoid putting pressure on myself. I put too much pressure on myself after winning this year’s Roland Garros and I didn’t like it.I always enjoyed tennis and relished the game away from tournaments too.But in the last few months, all the talk about making history has brought too much pressure.”
“It doesn’t mean I no longer want to contribute to the sport.But I also don’t want to keep on playing just for the sake of winning titles.If the wins and titles come I will embrace them with both arms. I am on an active vacation now and the Shanghai Masters is the next tournament.It’s a micro injury I am dealing with.But its nature is such that it could develop into a long-term issue. I am close to being fully fit but the injury is still affecting my serve.”
Clearly Novak Djokovic is feeling the heat and the pressure of being at the top has taken a toll on him. The injuries have further accentuated the stress for Djokovic and he needs to do self assessment for the same.
However, this doesn’t mean it is the end of Novak Djokovic that we have known. Players like Nadal and Federer have also bounced back from injuries and won titles. If Djokovic can revive himself, he still stands a chance to win grand slams next year. After all, its the GOAT title on the line for Novak Djokovic. The decision to take rest and not participate in China open, where he is unbeaten is a good one and will help him to work on his fitness.
The comebacks after injury are generally the toughest to make. However, Novak Djokovic is mentally very tough and has the potential to be a world beater again.