Novak Djokovic reached the quarterfinals in Madrid, after benefiting from Andy Murray’s retirement due to illness. The number 1 in the world had opened his ‘campaign’ at Caja Magica with a clear 6-3 6-2 at Gael Monfils on Tuesday afternoon.
That victory made him the first player in ATP history to beat an opponent 18 times in a row. 2022 has not given the Serbian any particular joys so far, also thanks to his choice not to get vaccinated against the Coronavirus.
In addition to not being able to defend the title at the Australian Open, the 34-year-old from Belgrade also suffered serious damage to his image. Due to strict US restrictions, Nole was also forced to give up the Masters 1000 in Indian Wells and Miami.
His hope is to arrive in full form at Roland Garros, where he will be called upon to defend the title he won last year. Speaking to the Tennis Channel, the 20-time Grand Slam champion analyzed his ‘relationship’ with the Madrid tournament.
Djokovic will face Carlos Alcaraz
“I’ve had some really great results in the past here,” Novak Djokovic told the Tennis Channel. “But of course every year is different. I haven’t been here (for) three years.
So far so good in the tournament.” Novak Djokovic has been a regular at the Madrid Masters since his tournament debut in 2006, when he lost to Fernando Gonzalez in the quarterfinals. “I think it (altitude) does help, to some extent.
It’s also tricky, because the ball flies through the air more than in any other tournament. It’s still not very high altitude, 500 meters, but you can still feel it. H*t day, new balls, it’s not easy to control the ball from the baseline.
So, it’s best to come a bit earlier, get those practice days in. The more you play, the better you feel, at least my case, on this court.” The Serb added that serving well can reap rich dividends when playing at altitude.
“I’m getting used to everything so the altitude is not affecting me in a negative way. Now I’m using to my own interest, my own advantage. Ball is coming to you, you can strike it nicely. If you’re serving well, it’s a big advantage.”
Novak Djokovic is undoubtedly the top player in the sport right now. However, tennis is not the only area where he has his best hands-on. Apart from being one of the best on court, Novak is also a straightforward and humorous character off it.