2022 has been a year full of difficulties for Novak Djokovic. The Serbian phenomenon was unable to play the Australian Open and the US Open due to his vaccination status, as well as having suffered serious image damage. For the same reason, Nole also had to miss all the American Masters 1000.
The 35-year-old from Belgrade redeemed himself by winning his seventh Wimbledon, which however did not award points, which caused him to fall in the ATP ranking. The 21-time Grand Slam champion enhanced his season by also winning the ATP Finals in Turin, the Internazionali BNL in Italy, the ATP 500 in Astana and the ATP 250 in Tel Aviv.
Despite missing numerous tournaments, the ‘Djoker’ still managed to end 2022 in the Top 5 and will be the big favorite at the 2023 Australian Open. odds 22 Grand Slams. At the press conference during the ATP in Pune, Marin Cilic spent nice words for Djokovic.
Cilic pays tribute to Djokovic
“Hats off to Novak Djokovic, because he endured a huge emotional hardship in January of last year. Whatever happened was not fair to him, definitely not. As a sportsman, having to remember and go through all that is absolutely disastrous, it’s really difficult.
However, he has again shown that he has the amazing ability to stay focused, to stay focused mentally. He was able to win a Grand Slam after everything that happened, so my biggest congratulations. He managed to play a great level and finished the season in a fantastic way.
After the US Open, we met in Tel Aviv, but also in Kazakhstan and Bercy played at an incredible level. I wish him all the best for this new season” – Marin Cilic said. He also talked about Roger Federer: “We wanted Roger to never go away, because he’s a great guy and obviously an inspiration not only to us gamers, but to a lot of guys around the world.
Also, to a lot of these Next Gen players that are now in the elite he has been their greatest inspiration, their greatest reference, perhaps he is still their idol. It is very difficult to assimilate that he is no longer there, it is clear that the circuit is different without him.
However, I would say that we are still lucky: we have Rafa and Novak playing, and when I say playing I mean keeping that enthusiasm that keeps them up there. It’s not the same without Roger, but I think the guys know the circuit looks different.”