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Novak Djokovic’s Coach Defends Him from Criticism for Playing in Tokyo 2020

Goran Ivanisevic is Novak Djokovic's trainer.
In this photo taken June 18, 2020, former Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic, left, who now coaches top-ranked Novak Djokovic, right, attends a training session during an exhibition tournament in Zadar, Croatia. The Croatian great, who won his only Grand Slam title at the All England Club in 2001, wrote on Instagram that he tested positive for coronavirus after two negative tests in the last 10 days. (AP Photo/Zvonko Kucelin)

Despite the fact that it has been almost 8 months since his failed participation in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, Novak Djokovic is still being questioned for representing his country in the great event, because it allegedly seriously affected his performance in the U.S. Open, where he lost in the final to the Russian Daniil Medvedev.

Regarding the complex situation described above, ‘Nole’s’ coach, Goran Ivanisevic, came out with a series of statements confirming his full support for his player’s decision to seek a gold medal for his country at the world’s greatest sporting event.

“No one could stop him from playing in the Olympics. I don’t think he made a mistake. I just think he made a mistake playing the mixed doubles. That was not necessary, because in the end he was tired,” Ivanisevic said according to information provided by

The 2001 Wimbledon champion added: “I don’t think that because of this he lost the final of the US Open. (Daniil) Medvedev was very good. You can never underestimate him at any time. He’s an unbelievable player. He was a better player that day. But Novak was not Novak. Something was missing. But again, I don’t think it was because of the Olympics.”

Finally, Ivanisevic made it clear that he is confident that his player will be able to defend the title at Roland Garros, which would allow him to equal Rafael Nadal in the first place of Grand Slam titles, with 21.

Let’s keep in mind that the Serb unexpectedly lost in the semifinals of the men’s draw at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, and later ended with a defeat in the bronze medal match against Spain’s Pablo Carreño Busta.

Novak Djokovic’s Record in 2022

Novak Djokovic has a 2-2 record in 2022
Serbia’s Novak Djokovic leaves the court after losing to Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in their second round match at the Monte-Carlo Masters tennis tournament, Tuesday, April 12, 2022 in Monaco. Fokina won 6-3, 6-7, 6-1. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole)

The number one in the ATP ranking started the 2022 campaign with a strong controversy in Australia for his refusal to take the vaccine against COVID-19, which ended up causing him to miss the three most important tournaments of the first quarter of the year: the Australian Open, the Indian Wells, and the Miami Open.

The 34-year-old tennis player has just four matches played in 2022, with two victories, both of which came at the ATP 500 in Dubai. And his only Masters 1000 tournament appearance came at the recently concluded Monte Carlo event, where he lost in his debut to Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.


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Written by Camila Sosa

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