Novak Djokovic has announced his schedule for the rest of the season, while also declaring that his primary goal is to seal the year-end World No. 1 ranking.
Djokovic spoke to AFP in Bosnia during a visit to a wellness park, just days after losing to Rafael Nadal in the French Open final. The Serb will skip the Paris Masters event this year and will play only two more events - the ATP 500 event in Vienna and the season-ending ATP Finals.
"This season, which was very intermittent, different and weird, at the same time brought me a lot of success and I'm very satisfied with my game, points, ranking," Djokovic said. "I hope that, after the month and a half that's left in this season, I will finish it as world number one. That's my professional goal and I'm going to work on it. It's mostly up to me."
Due to the coronavirus pandemic and the tour suspension, the ATP tour is using a new ranking system until March 2021. In this system, every player's better result from this year or the previous year at a specific event will count towards their ranking points.
That rule seems to have influenced Novak Djokovic's decision to skip the Paris Masters, as there is no way he can lose the ranking points he accumulated for winning the title last year. Conversely, he can't add any points even if he repeats the feat this year, so expending all that effort makes little sense.
By adding Vienna to his schedule, which he didn't play last year, Djokovic can gain additional ranking points. The Serb is hoping to tie Pete Sampras' record of ending the season as World No. 1 on six occasions, and playing Vienna could help a great deal in that.
"I'm going to play the Vienna tournament that wasn't originally on my schedule. I haven't played in Vienna for 15 years so I'm happy about that," Djokovic said.
I have played a lot of games for two and a half months: Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic also said he was visiting the wellness park in Bosnia to recuperate after an exhausting two and a half months of travel. During this period he won the Western & Southern Open Masters title, got defaulted in the fourth round of the US Open, won the Rome Masters and then reached the final at Roland Garros.
"I have played a lot of games for two and a half months... I could not go out because of the restrictions and rules and it has mentally exhausted me a lot. This is the last of my three days here and I feel recovered and regenerated," Djokovic said.Published 16 Oct 2020, 00:56 IST