(August 23, 2014) FLUSHING MEADOWS – World No. 1 Novak Djokovic is coming into the 2014 not exacting riding on the crest of a wave in recent weeks. After winning his second Wimbledon title in July, the Serbian lost early in both hard court Masters 1000 events in Toronto and Cincinnati.
In his pre-tournament news conference on Saturday, he said he’s hoping to peak at the US Open.
“I’m feeling better and better as the days go by, ” he said.
“It’s something that is encouraging me for this year’s US Open campaign. Obviously I want to peak with my form in the US Open. Yes, I wanted to do better in Canada and Cincinnati. Unfortunately I wasn’t even close to my best. But, you know, a lot of things happened in the last two months, and it was very emotional period. You know, I just felt a little bit flat on the court. I wasn’t managing to find that intensity and the perfect mindset. But, you know, it’s all normal. It’s something that I’m experiencing for the first time, right? So I’m trying to talk as much as I can to, of course, first of all my coach that has been through similar experiences in his life more than one time, Djokovic said with a smile. “So I’m trying to get as much information as I can, valuable advices that I can use in my case.”
Djokovic, recently married, with his wife expecting their first child, spoke about his impending role as a future father on the ATP Tour.
“I talk with people who are around me who have children,” Djokovic commented. “As I said before, my coach and people who have been in similar situations like I am and how they dealt with that, how that has affected their careers, their mindset, their, you know, just overall life. I with no doubt have only positive and joyful feelings approaching fatherhood, and hopefully — it’s going to happen in less than two months. Then I’m going to enjoy it and try to take as much energy as I can, positive energy to, you know, after kind of transfer that to the tennis court. But without a doubt, life changes. You know, priorities change. My priorities, you know, my family, my wife, my future kid. You know, tennis is not definitely not No. 1 anymore.”
The top seed will begin his quest for a second US Open against Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman.
So how much does Djokovic know about his opponent? (He’s) “one of the youngsters from Argentina and that he’s very quick on the court. He’s a clay court specialist. He had his best results on clay. I watched some videos of him playing Roland Garros against I think Roger this year. I watched him on several other occasions. So I’m going to, with my team, try to prepare myself tactically as best I can. It’s obviously always tricky to play against somebody I never faced before. And playing on the center court, as I was saying before, for Schwartzman will be a unique experience. He definitely has nothing to lose. I’m going to try to use my experience playing many matches on the center court and get a win.
Karen Pestaina for Tennis Panorama