Novak Djokovic admits Melbourne is still close to his heart and that the Australian Open remains his favorite Grand Slam. 12 months ago, Djokovic went through hell in Australia as he was detained and eventually deported from Australia.
Now, Djokovic is back in Australia and ready to compete again at the Australian Open, where he is a record nine-time champion. Also, Djokovic became a Grand Slam champion at Melbourne Park after beating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the 2008 Australian Open final .
“Melbourne is still close to my heart. What happened was not easy to digest for a while, but I had to move on. It won’t replace all the good memories I’ve had in Melbourne over the years, I’m looking forward to playing there.
It is my favorite Slam and my goal is to be in the best shape there,” Djokovic told Sport Klub.
Djokovic sets his eyes on the Australian Open title
Rafael Nadal owns a record 22-time Grand Slam titles, while Djokovic is second on the all-time list with 21 Majors.
At this stage of his career, Djokovic is mainly focused on the Grand Slam tournaments. “Every Grand Slam title is special, that’s one of the biggest reasons why I’m still competing. I like tennis a lot, traveling not as much as before , but it’s part of our sport.
As long as I have the motivation to play at the highest level, I will be there, I hope that I will already have success,” Djokovic explained. Between 2019 and 2021, Djokovic captured three consecutive Australian Open titles.
After not being allowed to compete in the 2022 Australian Open, Djokovic will certainly be extremely motivated to do well in his return to Melbourne Park. Going into the Australian Open, some think Djokovic may not be received well following everything that happened 12 months a
But this week, Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley said the Australians “love seeing greatness” as he believes Djokovic will enjoy a warm reception in Melbourne.