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Peace and glory for the released Djokovic


The Serbian, back at the top after being crowned in Melbourne and equaling Nadal's 22 grand, reconciles with the country that expelled him a year ago: "It is the most important victory of my life"

Novak Djokovic began to win this Australian Open that he now celebrates at the same moment in which a year ago, the border guard of the oceanic country guided him through the Tullamarine airport towards the plane that would return him to Belgrade.

Arrested first, tried later and finally deported, the Serbian tennis player then promised himself that he would return and conquer the tournament on which he has built an extraordinary career, flooded with success but also with shadows.

An unequaled competitor, because the numbers and the string of records that shine in his palmares determine it, Nole has alternated fascinating sports passages with episodes out of tune.

None, in any case, like the one who starred last year when trying to cross the Australian border without having a green light,

“This is extra motivation, that's for sure.

It will serve as fuel for me, ”he declared a month after the expulsion, concentrating in the following months all his efforts on getting in tune, coming back and winning.

Mission accomplished.

Along the way, Djokovic –6-3, 7-6(4) and 7-6(5) in yesterday's final against Stefanos Tsitsipas– won six more titles, including some as prestigious as the Rome Masters and others from maximum relief such as Wimbledon or the Masters Cup;

However, everything responded to the plan hatched in his mind that January 16 in which he toured the airport guarded by the security forces, after being held for a week in a refugee hotel in Melbourne, while his name opened the news, headlined covers and was adopted by anti-vaxxers as a symbol of resistance and dignity.

More information

Djokovic redeems himself in his paradise

From there, only one goal, one cause: to return and succeed.

Settle a few debts at a stroke.

“Really, I was caught up in a media storm around the world related to anything to do with covid and the vaccine.

Suddenly, I became the villain of the world, which is obviously terrible for an athlete, ”he declared to channel 9News Melbourne in the run-up to the tournament;

“I couldn't fight it, nor did I want to get into it.

The media has been targeting me for months, and not in a particularly positive way."

For a year now, although he was competing in Monte Carlo, Madrid, Paris or Tel Aviv, the new number one – a condition that he regains after losing it for the last time in June – projected each hit thinking about his return to Australia and how he would restore lost credit. , since the chapter on customs, the police and his challenge to the country's legal framework seriously damaged his public image.

The ugly Duckling'

“Honestly, I'm over it.

Once I arrived in Australia, my intentions were always very positive.

Of course, the feelings have been different, but as I have said many times, I do not hold grudges, ”she indicated two days before fighting Tsitsipas for the scepter and world throne.

That same night, after getting rid of the American Tommy Paul, she deepened and summarized that for him, his sport is a source of self-knowledge.

“I play professional tennis for several reasons.

In a way, I feel like on the track I always have an opportunity to learn something new about myself, about fighting those demons that I guess we all have.

When we're out on the court in the middle of a battle, some of the things come to the surface, and I have to deal with it.

So it's a great school of life for me."

Since he was a child and entered the ATP circuit at just 15 years old, the tennis player was always a free verse and governed by his own codes.

Burlesque at first, he moderated later but he always deviated from the norm with a rebellion on many occasions, misunderstood in the eyes of the outside.

Comfortable in dialectical melee and in hot duels, he has always felt aggrieved in the comparison with Nadal and Federer, understanding that from the circuit itself and journalism a biased and interested interpretation of history is made;

the Swiss knight, the exemplary island hero and he, the

ugly duckling


"In a film there can't be three good guys, there must be someone against it...", the Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka illustrated three years ago.

Djokovic's shadow posing with the champion's trophy. FAZRY ISMAIL (EFE)

Increasingly distanced from the


, in 2021 he founded a union to safeguard the rights of the most modest players (PTPA) without the knowledge of the ATP and has always expressed himself bluntly.

Faced with Federer's restraint and Nadal's humble speech, he has never hidden his ambition to grab all the records and be remembered as the greatest tennis player of all time.

"That goal has always been there for me, I want to make history in this sport", he exposes without half measures, getting closer to it because the Swiss stayed at 20 grand and the Spanish, constantly going in and out of the infirmary, knows that his professional path hangs by a thread as a result of injuries.

Djokovic, meanwhile, is going with everything.

"I don't know how many more years I'm going to play, it doesn't just depend on the body," he warns.

“But really, I don't want to stop here, I don't intend to.

If I am physically and mentally well, I know that I have a chance to win these tournaments, ”he added after achieving his twenty-second major, tenth trophy in Australia, and settling a pending score with himself.

The one that he contracted when his principles collided with the legal framework of the country that twelve months later, sees him redeem himself in style and give another historic acceleration.

From the day he said goodbye, Djokovic began to win this last Open.

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Source: elparis

All sports articles on 2023-01-30

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