Novak Djokovic opens up on retirement plans during 2022 Laver Cup

Novak Djokovic has said his retirement could be postponed further as he is not playing as much as he used to a few years ago.

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic

Serbian tennis superstar Novak Djokovic has revealed he is not thinking of retiring anytime soon as his body is responding well. Djokovic made the comments during an on-court interview at the 2022 Laver Cup while paying tribute to Swiss maestro Roger Federer.

After winning the Wimbledon title this year, Djokovic increased his all-time major tally to 21, one behind Rafael Nadal’s 22 and one ahead of Federer. The Serb now has his eyes on next year’s Australian Open, an event he has won a record nine times during his career.

However, Djokovic’s entry pass in Melbourne for 2023 is not yet assured due to doubts over the country’s Covid-19 vaccination laws. Djokovic had also remained out of competition at the 2022 US Open for similar reasons.

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Djokovic looking to peak at Grand Slams

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic

“I don’t feel yet so old, to be honest, for my tennis career to finish. I still feel my body is serving me, is listening to me well. That’s the key I think when you get to 35-plus,” the 21-time major champion said in London.

“I’m not playing as much as I played a few years ago. I want to peak at the best tournaments, biggest tournaments in the world, which are Grand Slams and some of the biggest ATP events, playing for my country,” he added.

After being part of Federer’s grand farewell at the Laver Cup, Djokovic will compete at the Tel Aviv Open in Israel, where he will also play doubles alongside his former 45-year-old partner Jonathan Erlich.

Interestingly, this will be the last event before Erlich’s retirement, who is from Israel and has previously even won a doubles title with Djokovic. Erlich has a career-high ranking of No.5 in doubles and won the last of his 22 titles partnering Andy Ram at the 2009 Australian Open.

Next year, Erlich won the doubles title at Queen’s with Djokovic, who has competed in doubles at all the four Grand Slams during his career but won only that lone ATP doubles title. Djokovic also posted a video thanking Erlich for his contributions to his career.

“I know this is going to be your last tournament. The best memory of my life in doubles was with you. You gave me the pleasure of winning the only doubles title of my life in Queen’s,” said the former World No.1.

“You’ve always been very friendly towards me and towards my team. Everybody loves you and everybody will miss you on the tour. I look forward to seeing you in Tel Aviv in your ‘last dance’,” Djokovic added.

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Erlich also thanked Djokovic saying he was lucky to play alongside one of the best players in the world.

“First of all I want to thank Novak, he wanted to play with me. He’s a good friend, it has been an honor and I’ve enjoyed every minute,” the 45-year-old Israeli player said.