Novak Djokovic: If I Could Go Back In Time I’d Love To Play Sampras And Try To Return His Serve
by Tom Gainey | March 13th, 2012, 9:38 am

Defending champion Novak Djokovic improved his win streak to eight after a 62, 63 win over Kevin Anderson yesterday at the BNP Parisbas Open at Indian Wells.

In the post-match, Djokovic was asked who he’d most want to play if he could go back in time in tennis history. And the World No. 1 responded declaring Pete Sampras would be his pick.

“Pete, for sure,” Djokovic said. “I would love to return that serve.

“He has been my idol, and I had that privilege to meet him couple of times and discuss tennis, as you can expect,” Djokovic added. “He gave me some really great advices, you know, from his own experience when he became No. 1 and what it took him to stay there for a long time.

“We have kind of a similar careers, you know, rankings‑wise, and so it was a very valuable experience for me to sit down and chat with him. Unfortunately never had an opportunity to hit with him and to play an official match. But, look, you know, I would love to. At least an exhibition match would be a satisfaction.”

So at there peak, who would win Djokovic or Sampras?

Djokovic, who’s had allergy problems in the past, said despite a virus hitting the tournament he’s been fine all week. In the fourth round tomorrow Djokovic will play Spaniard Pablo Andujar.

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7 Comments for Novak Djokovic: If I Could Go Back In Time I’d Love To Play Sampras And Try To Return His Serve

jane Says:

Not a surprising pick for Nole – he always talks about Pete. Their games are quite different though so it be would interesting to see them play in that sense.

Brando Says:

That would be a good one. Any quick surface- pete, any slow surface- nole, would be the split up there I feel. Federer v laver and nadal v Borg would also be mouthwatering matches- if only…

Dan Martin Says:

It probably depends some on the strings available. Maybe Pete with today’s strings would have a better backhand than he had. Novak trying to return and pass with lesser technology would be tricky.

Michael Says:

That match up should be quite interesting. The GREATEST RETURNER AGAINST THE GREATEST SERVER.

Stella Says:

Maybe he could try his luck against Raonic. Sure to be a treat!!!

Huh Says:

if nole realy coulda
been sent to era of pete,
then with th string technology n surfac of dat time, nole woulda been eaten for lunch in dat era! with hiz talent, pete at least could
mak dent on nole evn now! and nadal’s situation woulda been even worse in pete era, haha

Dory Says:

Djokvic vs Federer is also The GREATEST RETURNER AGAINST THE GREATEST SERVER. But yes Sampras’ serve (and volley game) was AMAZING. One of the best.

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