Novak Djokovic’s coach recently opened up about the challenges of working with the world no. 1, especially when he faces a loss, although it is a rare one. According to his coach, Djokovic always strives for excellence and wholeheartedly dedicates himself to improving his game. Recently, Djokovic experienced defeat twice within a fortnight to Jannik Sinner at the ATP Finals group stage and later in the Davis Cup semifinals.
Sharing his experiences of those losses, Djokovic’s coach, Goran Ivanisevic, recently revealed that it is tough to deal with Djokovic when he loses a match, stating, “He always gives his best and tries his best. But it’s not easy to deal with him when he’s losing.” Djokovic’s reaction to losses can be intense, and Ivanisevic shared insights into the aftermath of such moments.
He added, “He’s not an easy guy, especially when something doesn’t go his way. He was torturing us, pulling out our fingernails. We are still here, alive…Sometimes it’s very complicated.”
Jannik Sinner after beating Novak Djokovic at ATP Finals:
“There is no more beautiful place to defeat the world #1. The story was similar to the one with Medvedev, who I could never beat. Thanks to the crowd, we won it together. I played the big moments well in the 3rd set. It… pic.twitter.com/iMimqkwI5M
— The Tennis Letter (@TheTennisLetter) November 14, 2023
Narrating the ordeal after Djokovic’s loss to Sinner at the ATP Finals, he mentioned that the match concluded late on Tuesday. However, Novak was nowhere to be seen on Wednesday. Uncertainty remained until Thursday about whether Novak would warm up for the match against Hubert Hurkacz. Finally, they learned he intended to play.
Reflecting on Djokovic’s motivation to stay ahead of the competition, Ivanisevic compared him to a CEO seeking profits for a company. “He seeks and demands profits. Those profits distinguish him from others,” explained Ivanisevic, drawing parallels between the pressure in professional sports and the business world when it comes to coaching Novak Djokovic.
Goran Ivanisevic’s bold prediction on Jannik Sinner came true
In an earlier interview that Goran Ivanisevic had given before the start of the final leg of the ATP 2023 season, concluding with the Paris Masters, ATP Finals, and Davis Cup, he offered valuable insights into the changing landscape of men’s tennis. Notably, Ivanisevic discussed the potential formidable opponents who could challenge the supremacy of Novak Djokovic.
Ivanisevic had foreseen Jannik Sinner as a potential “big opponent” for the Serbian superstar. During the interview, Ivanisevic asserted that although Carlos Alcaraz remains Djokovic’s primary rival, he stressed the impending challenge posed by Sinner, stating, “Novak’s big opponent could be the Italian Jannik Sinner, who also knows how to get into a crisis.”
— Davis Cup (@DavisCup) November 25, 2023
Despite Djokovic having a 3-0 record against Sinner, the coach highlighted Sinner’s impressive 2023 season, including victories in Montpellier, Toronto, and Beijing, as well as a notable triumph at the Masters 1000 tournament in Canada, where he captured his first ATP Masters 1000 title. He also suggested that it was hard to imagine someone keeping up with Djokovic for a long time. However, Sinner won the last two of their three matches!