Facebook Social Button Twitter Social Button Follow Us on InstagramYouTube Social Button
NewsScoresRankingsLucky Letcord PodcastShopPro GearPickleballGear Sale

Popular This Week

Net Notes - A Tennis Now Blog

Net Posts

Industry Insider - A Tennis Now Blog

Industry Insider

Second Serve - A Tennis Now Blog

Second Serve



By Richard Pagliaro | @Tennis_Now | Saturday, April 13, 2024

Tennis is played in a rectangle.

Novak Djokovic has felt a bit boxed in this season.

More: Ruud Shocks Djokovic

In the aftermath of his 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 to Casper Ruud in the Monte-Carlo semifinals today, Djokovic delivered a candid assessment of his 2024 campaign: "Not a great season at all."

It's a season that saw Jannik Sinner dethrone defending champion Djokovic at he Australian Open last January before Djokovic and coach of five years Goran Ivanisevic split in March. Semifinal appearances in Melbourne and Monte-Carlo would be welcome results for most players, but don't meet Djokovic's lofty standards.

"I mean, I'm used to really high standard in terms of expectations of the results, so not having a title is, maybe comparing to the last 15 years, not a great season at all," Djokovic told the media in Monte-Carlo after losing to Rune for the first time in six meetings. "But I had semis of Australia, semis here. I only played three tournaments this year, so of course, you know, it's normal to expect that you have some seasons where you don't start well, and this is the one."

Though Djokovic is right where he should be in the rankings, the Grand Slam king has seen opponents make history against him. Sinner defeated Djokovic en route to becoming the first Italian to win the Australian Open.

World No. 123 Luca Nardi toppled Djokovic in Indian Wells to become the lowest-ranked man to ever defeat the Serbian superstar in a Masters 1000 or a major.

Today, Rune scored his first career win over a world No. 1 becoming the first Norwegian to defeat a reigning world No. 1.

The good news for Djokovic is he still has seven weeks to sharpen his game before launching defense of his Roland Garros crown.

The 24-time Grand Slam champion prioritizes winning a 25th major championship in Paris or at Wimbledon as well as winning an elusive Olympic gold medal this summer as his main aims.

"Hopefully, yeah, I can pick up, in terms of results, I can build from here, because, you know, I played some good tennis," Djokovic said. "Hopefully in the next tournaments I'll be able to play even better."

Photo credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty