The Serbian tennis player gave a very personal interview to Italy’s Corriere della Sera in which he delved into his professional and personal relationship with Nadal and Federer and defended himself against those who consider him anti-vaccination.
When you extend your stay ATP Rome 2023a tournament where he is already in the quarterfinals, Novak Djokovic He has had time this week to give a series of interviews on more personal aspects. In one of them he admitted it Rafael Nadal It will always be his biggest competitor, but in the second, much larger one granted to the Italian mediaCorriere della Sera‘, whose statements also include Sports worldthe Serbian admitted that while he has the utmost respect for the Balearic Islands, a possible friendship off the slopes is impossible due to the great rivalry that both have and still have.
He thinks the same way about his other big competitor, the Swiss Roger Federer. As for the controversy surrounding his refusal to vaccinate COVID 19 that has caused him to miss so many tournaments, both last year and this year, Djokovic once again defended anyone’s free choice to get vaccinated or not, distancing himself from those who simply classify him as anti-vaccination.
The utmost respect for Nadal, but no friendship
«He is only a year older than me, we are both Geminis, at first we even went out to eat together a couple of times. But friendship with him has been impossible. I have always had great respect and admiration for him. Thanks to him and Federer, I grew and became who I am. I know this will bind us together forever I feel grateful to them. Nadal is a part of my life, in the last 15 years I have seen him more than my mother«.
Agree with Federer
«We’ve never been friends between competitors it is not possiblebut we have never been enemies. I have always respected him, he is one of the greatest of all time. It had an extraordinary effect. but I’ve never been around him«.
defender of free choice
«He 95% What has been written and said about me on TV in the last three years is completely false. I am not anti-vaccination and I have never claimed to be, and I am not pro-vaccination. What I am is for choice, I defend freedom of choice. It is a basic human right to be free to decide what to inject into the body and what not. After returning from Australia I explained it on the BBC, but they removed many sentences, who disagreed. That’s why I never talked about this story again«.
Misjudged based on public opinion and district
«I played by all the rules and didn’t endanger anyone, but there I became a political case that endangered the world. A system formed by the media demanding an item that bucked the mainstream and they used me for it. They totally mislabeled me, it still gives me stomach aches, I was marked as persona non grata. In the end, the person in front of the big media has no chance. I was disappointed in a lot of people. When half of society is against you you see people’s real faces. Many people have turned their backs on me, including many players and some organizers«.
His wife Jelena, the mainstay of his lifestyle
«He saw something in me everything i know i learned from him. If I’m such a perfectionist, it’s because he was. I had found Monica Seles and that made me think so. Do you want a Coke? Monica Seles doesn’t drink Coca Cola. Do you want a hamburger? Monica Seles does not eat fast food. he made me grow as a manIt prepared me for life. My whole holistic approach is based on that, my attention, how I sleep, how I recover, how I host my thoughts.».
Unlike any war
«As a son of war, all I can say is that nobody wins when one of them breaks out. War is the ugliest thing in life, the worst human inventionWorst idea ever. I have seen the suffering and poverty in my country, all you can do is pray to God that it will end tomorrow. War opens a void in every family, that’s why I can’t support any war against any country«.
Kosovo in his heart
«I want to return to Kosovo with my wife to baptize my children, eight-year-old Stefan and five-year-old Tara. I know it’s a sensitive issue, that the conflict still exists even though it’s no longer armed, but there’s a lot of tension. I don’t want to go into politics, but Kosovo is in the heart of every Serb the center of our culture, identity, tradition and religion«.