Last month Novak Djokovic admitted that he no longer was motivated by the No. 1 ranking or winning Grand Slams. A few weeks later, Djokovic was asked if anything had changed in his outlook. Well, it hasn’t. And he doesn’t even have catching Roger Federer’s 17 Slams as a goal.
“Right now, no,” Djokovic said of reaching 17. “I don’t think about that at all. I don’t think about any achievements. I don’t think about any trophies or No. 1s of the world, the ranking or anything like that.
“It’s completely different,” he said. “I play partly because, you know, I also enjoy being successful and seeing the results of my work. But on the other hand, that comes second now. It’s not the priority.”
Djokovic again explained his new outlook.
“I try to look at things from different perspective, from more human perspective rather than from perspective of professional tennis player,” he said. “When I get on the court, of course I want to give my best and eventually try to win the match, but that comes as a consequence of how I feel and how I approach, how I prepare, you know, just a general mindset and approach. But not as a priority of must-win type of mindset, you know, because that is not working for me anymore.
“I’m going to stick with that and I have just a different kind of vision right now.”
Djokovic added that some of the recent injuries could be a factor to his new mindset.
“Just before I arrived to Olympic Games, things were looking great, I was in great shape,” he said. “I won Toronto. You know, I was, as I can say, the peak of my abilities. I was extremely motivated to do well there, but I lost that equilibrium. I lost that balance, because I exaggerated with the way I pushed myself in that kind of preparation and I really, you know, wanted it too much maybe.”
“So that’s why I think this injury, if I analyze it more deeply, is a reflection of that kind of mindset. I learned a lesson and I move on. Again, I can learn so much from these kind of circumstances and situations, especially when I lose big matches, that that’s when I learn the biggest lessons.”
On Thursday in Shanghai the Serb continues his title defense against Vasek Pospisil.
“What I’m saying is that I’m still here, I’m still playing because I enjoy it, but that’s my main priority,” he said. “I’m a father, I’m a husband, I enjoy my life to full extent. But in tennis, you know, things happened differently for me last three months and that’s it. Right now this is where I am.”
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