September 15 (Hfrance.fr) - The obstinate will of Novak Djokovic towards greatness makes it almost unthinkable for him to rest before owning all the tennis records in the book, but some wonder if his hunger will survive the departure of his two main rivals.
The Serbian arrived at a victory of a 21he Grand Slam title last week that would have pulled him away from a tie with Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal and also made him the only man in 52 years to win all four majors in the same year.
Djokovic hopes his loss to Daniil Medvedev in the US Open final on Sunday was just a hit and few would bet against him to resume normal duty in January at the Australian Open, where he will seek a record 10th title.
Ni Federer, 40, Nor Nadal, 35, were in New York due to injuries and while their careers aren't quite over, they're certainly fine at the start of the end.
Daniel Vallverdu, who has coached some of the best players outside of the 'Big Three' over the past decade in Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka and Juan Martin del Potro are intrigued by what this means for Djokovic.
"As long as Roger and Rafa are still playing, I think there is going to be a great motivation for Djokovic to continue ", said the Venezuelan at Hfrance.fr.
"I will be very interested to see what happens with Novak after Roger and Rafa decide to quit. I think that if they are still there, he will still have a lot of dynamism. "
Australian Todd Woodbridge, nine-time Wimbledon doubles champion and a semi-finalist in singles, told Wide World of Sports that Djokovic needed Federer and Nadal to challenge him and while the Serbian could still win a few more majors, the domination of the "Big Three " was finished.
Djokovic admitted in New York that he was exhausted by the physical and emotional toll of his incredible run in the majors in 2021, but stated that the desire for more success will remainit.
If he lacks motivation, there are still some milestones to keep him focused. learn more
Having already broken Federer's record for the longest period at the top of the men's world rankings, he could revise the mark of all Steffi Graf arrivals for sport - 377 weeks - in June of next year.
A 37th Masters 1000 title would overtake him Nadal as the most successful player in these elite tournaments, while another Roland Garros title would make him the only Open-era player to have won all four Grand Slam titles three times.
'NEXT MOTIVATION '
Assuming he wins Grand Slam title number 21, the next big brandwould be Margaret Court's 24 major crowns, a record that Serena Williams was also chasing after winning her 23rd in 2017.
Despite the possibility of Federer and Nadal i increasing their own tally, Vallverdu thinks that may well be the goal of keeping Djokovic.
"I will be very interested to know where he finds his next motivation ", he added.
" Once he reaches number 21, he will find a way to motivate himself. I think it will be more difficult for him to motivate himself if Roger and Rafa are not there.
"But knowing the guy how competitive he is and how hungry he is to keep breaking new records ... it's probably a good target for him to try to reach 24 and 25 to pass that record by Margaret Court. "
AlthoughHe is only a year younger than Nadal, any discussion of the impending demise of the game of the very fit and very disciplined Djokovic is certainly far from reality.
Dominic Thiem, who won the US Open title last year but was unable to defend it due to injury, expects no drop in intensity from the Serbian.
"After his victory at Roland Garros, everyone was only talking about the calendar slam ", a Thiem told Omnisport.
"So it might just happen that this makes him even stronger next year, when all this talk and all this pressure is no longer so strong. " Sudipto Ganguly reported in Mumbai; edited by Nick Mulvenney and Christian Radnedge
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