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Novak Djokovic has yet again finished as the year-end number 1 player. But during the acceptance speech, he made some remarks that have caused a real stir. Addressing the crowd in Italian, he stated that he wants to play the game for two more years. Now, whether this was a mistake in his Italian skills or not, what’s said was said. And now, at age 34, many are speculating about when he might retire. Of course, this statement at the ATP Finals made serious waves on the topic.
Could the great Novak Djokovic really hang up his rackets in two years time? Or should we be even reading much into this statement at all? Keep reading to find out.
Novak Djokovic – the end in sight?
Although Djokovic might have made these comments in Turin, I really don’t think this is the case. There is still much for Djokovic to accomplish in his career, and let’s not forget, he is still the best in the world. Some people talk about going out on top, but Djokovic just doesn’t strike me as that guy. I believe he will fight until he can’t anymore, and there are several reasons why I believe this:
Later clarification with the media
As it happens, and as one would expect, Djokovic was asked to clarify his comments with the media afterwards. In this post-match press conference, he stated that the comments have been taken out of context. He explicitly stated that he plans to compete for more than just two years. In addition to this, he says he wants to compete for as long as his body stays fit, and for as long as he still loves competing. Looking at him physically, I’d say this won’t be too much of an issue!
His 20 Grand Slam record
Currently, Novak Djokovic has 20 Grand Slams, as does Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. I highly doubt that he plans on retiring when his nearest rivals have the same number of slams. And despite what these guys might say, I am sure that they are super competitive when it comes to who will get the most slams. After all, this is pretty much the only category where Djokovic hasn’t surpassed either Federer or Nadal to date.
Should he make his way to 21 slams, he might start eyeing up the overall record of 24 Grand Slams set by Margaret Court!
Still fit and healthy
In recent years, Djokovic is the only guy out of the big 4 (including Murray) who hasn’t sustained a bad injury. Federer has had severe knee problems. Murray has had career-changing hip issues. And Nadal has had knee and foot injuries in recent years. Sure, Djokovic did have an elbow injury a few years back, but that’s about it. No injury has kept him off the tour for a sustained period of time either.
His diet, commitment to the sport, and physical condition are just unrivalled right now, in my opinion. And should he stay on his current path, I believe he will be around for many more years.