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Jelena Ristic: The secret behind Novak Djokovic's scintillating 2015

Manish Verma
3.56K   //    25 Jan 2016, 13:17 IST
Jelena Ristic
Jelena Ristic

Novak Djokovic had one of the greatest years for any tennis player in history in 2015. He absolutely and utterly dominated the men’s tour, winning three Grand Slams and six Masters 1000 titles. He was like a freight train running roughshod over one and all. However, the foundation of all this success and domination is his family, and especially his wife Jelena Ristic.

A long partnership between Jelena and Djokovic

“Behind any successful man, there is a woman!”

We have heard this old adage many a time. Here we get a real life example through these two. Djokovic and Jelena first met in high school and they began liking each other from the beginning. They started dating in 2005 and finally got engaged in 2013.

Jelena can always be seen courtside for most of Djokovic’s matches, especially in the big tournaments like the Grand Slams. She gets very passionate while watching him too, and you can see her cheering, urging and shouting for his man. The myriad of expressions on her face during a Djokovic match show how much it means to her.

She has been a big pillar for support for Djokovic, who has often acknowledged the importance of Jelena in his life. On an NBC’s show in 2012, Djokovic commented on Jelena, who was then his girlfriend:

“Jelena is the love of my life. We have been together for a few years and her honesty is what I love about her and what keeps us happy and in love. She is capable, ambitious and strong.”

Ristic cheering for Novak Djokovic during 2012 Australian Open
Ristic cheering for Novak Djokovic during 2012 Australian Open

Jelena seems to be deeply motivated about helping Djokovic realize his career dreams. She had commented in the NBC’s show back in 2012:

“I'm really proud. It's his dream to be so successful and I'm really happy for him that he managed to, you know, accomplish at least part of his dream. Hopefully I'll be there to help him and to see him achieving the biggest one, the top.”

Her above statement seems to be more of a prophecy now. Djokovic has scaled peaks in his career which not many men have done before. And if he continues his pace, we might realistically see him climb the top of the Grand Slam mountain.

Marriage in 2014, followed by parenthood in 2015 and apparent Kinghood of tennis world

The two got married on July 10, 2014, in the Church of Saint Stephen, Serbia. At that time, they were expecting their first baby. Their son was born in October 2014 and they named his Stefan.

Marriage and parenthood seems to have had an amazing effect on his tennis too. Ever since marrying Jelena in July 2014, Djokovic has won approximately 90% of his matches and had an unearthly domination of the tennis world in 2015.

Djokovic credits a lot of his recent success to his stable family life. After winning the Wimbledon 2015 title, Djokovic commented upon this aspect:

“Whether I’m winning or losing, she’s always there. Family’s always there. When I go back home, I’m not a tennis player anymore. I’m a father and a husband.”

“That’s a kind of balance that I think allows me to play this well. Ever since I got married and became a father, I haven’t lost many matches, I won many tournaments. “

In fact, Djokovic has been so happy after marriage and so convinced of its amazing impact on him that he even advised other players to tie the knot and reap the benefits.

 “I suggest that to every player, ‘Get married, have kids, let’s enjoy this.”

During the 2015 US Open, Djokovic also commented about the amazing impact becoming a father had on him:

“Being a father has brought a lot of positive energy and motivation into my life,” Djokovic told Hollywood Take. “I never thought I could experience such unconditional love and personal satisfaction. And now I understand what all the people who were parents before were telling me. I'm just blessed to be able to follow his development every day. His presence in New York with my wife means a lot to me because they give me the serenity I need."

You cannot argue with the results. He has won almost everything there is to win on the tennis circuit and looks on course for a record sixth title in Australian Open 2016. Whatever happens, you will be sure to see Jelena cheering on for his husband in the final stages of the tournament, as the Serbian tries to create more tennis history, charting his own unique path to tennis immortality.

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Manish Verma
I am passionate about sports especially tennis,cricket and WWE which i have been following since the last 20 years......right from when Kumble bamboozled the English in 1993, to Laxman's 281 against the Aussies in 2001 , to Nadal's win over Federer in Wimbledon 2008......all these moments make life that much more special..
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