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Novak Djokovic hopes visit to Serbian monastery will help him 'prepare well' for ATP Finals

Novak Djokovic at the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals
Novak Djokovic at the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals
Modified 10 Nov 2020, 19:01 IST

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic hopes that a visit to the Sisatovac Monastery in Northern Serbia will help give him the best possible preparation for the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals in London.

The Sisatovac Monastery is a Serb Orthodox monastery situated on the Fruska Gora mountain in the province of Vojvodina in Serbia. Djokovic visited the holy site last weekend, just a few days after his quarterfinal loss to Lorenzo Sonego at the Vienna Open.

On Friday, Novak Djokovic clinched the year-end World No. 1 ranking for the sixth time in his career, equaling the record set by Pete Sampras. Djokovic chose to skip the Paris Masters event last week and has been spending time in Serbia with his family to recharge his batteries ahead of the ATP Finals.

"I hope this visit will help me prepare well for this great challenge. In London, my rivals will be the best tennis players in the world. On the way to a great result, both physical and mental fitness will count. I hope that in my case everything will be in the right place," Djokovic said.

During his visit to the monastery, Djokovic attended the morning service, met with the monks and visited the building where the clergy live and serve.

The Serb is known to be a big believer in spirituality, and has stated that he is an Orthodox Christian in earlier interviews.

Novak Djokovic was deeply affected by the death of a Serbian Orthodox Church leader prior to his Vienna loss

Prior to his lopsided quarterfinal loss to Lorenzo Sonego in Vienna, Novak Djokovic posted an Instagram story about the death of Amfilohije Radovic. Radovic was a prominent figure within the Serbian Orthodox Church, who passed away jsut hours before Djokovic took the court.

Novak Djokovic leaves the court after losing his quarter-final match to Lorenzo Sonego at Vienna
Novak Djokovic leaves the court after losing his quarter-final match to Lorenzo Sonego at Vienna

During his press conference after his loss, Novak Djokovic admitted that Radovic's death, coupled with the fact that he had achieved his goal of winning two matches to clinch the year-end No. 1 ranking, did affect his mood on the court to some extent.

"To be honest I did not feel like playing too much," Djokovic had said. "The sad news did have an effect on me, but not the extent that I could not play. I have come to Vienna with a goal and I have fulfilled it. This was admittedly a very weird day, but it is what it is. I move on and I am turning a new page."

The Nitto ATP Finals will begin in London's O2 Arena on November 15. The event will see the top eight singles players and doubles teams compete for the biggest title in tennis outside the Grand Slams.


Novak Djokovic has won the season-ending event on five occasions, the last of which came in 2015.

Published 10 Nov 2020, 17:22 IST
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