Who can stop Novak Djokovic in 2023? For now, no one. The Serb, who said on Sunday that he is nearing full health after suffering a hamstring injury in January in Australia, posts his perfect record of 12-0 at the 2023 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.
Djokovic returns to action this week for the first time since he captured his 22nd Grand Slam title at the Australian Open. His unbeaten record will be put to the test at the ATP 500 in Dubai, where he feels right at home. “Dubai has become in the last 10 to 15 years one of the most important places and bases for tennis players, both men and women,” Djokovic said.
“A lot of players come here in the offseason, myself included. I try to take a week or two in December and come to play the tournament [in February]. The weather is fantastic, very international, the conditions, the facilities, everything is phenomenal.” “People love tennis [here].
People appreciate the tennis players here. I feel comfortable. I feel welcome. They have been very supportive in previous years when I have played in Dubai. I’m looking forward to a great atmosphere on court.” The 35-year-old has a 43-7 record in outdoor hard-court matches, including titles in 2009-11, 2013 and 2020.
In 2022, Djokovic lost in the quarterfinals to finalist Jiri Vesely. The world No. 1, who has already won two titles this year (Adelaide and Australian Open), has declared that he is one hundred percent. When he captured his 10th title at Melbourne Park, the Belgrade tennis player played through a left hamstring injury.
Even so, Djokovic only dropped one set in the first Major of the season. “It was a challenge,” Djokovic said. “I knew what I was going through and so did my team members. That makes the win in Melbourne even greater because I had to deal with [adversity].”
Nole is a 22-time Grand Slam champion
Novak Djokovic once again reiterated in the press conference that his main priority are the Grand Slams.
“I have other priorities, top priorities, which is first of all trying to be healthy and preparing myself in every sense of that word for the tournaments that I’m going to be participating in, particularly building form and trying to peak at the Grand Slams,” Djokovic said.
“But at the same time wherever I play, I don’t want to take away the importance of the tournament, whether that be in here in Dubai, 250 event we’re playing in Banja Luka in a few months’ time,” he said. “Everywhere I go, I want to win.
Every trophy I get to win maybe values three, four times as much as some trophies that I won some years ago, 10 years ago, because I know that it’s different.”
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