Novak Djokovic predicts Rafael Nadal's return in the 2025 season after watching on against Zverev

Wednesday, 29 May 2024 at 07:42
Novak Djokovic believes Rafael Nadal will be back for the 2025 season despite seemingly having some semblance of a farewell against Alexander Zverev at the French Open.
Djokovic who saw off Pierre Hugues Herbert 6-4, 7-6, 6-4 to begin his own campaign at the French Open on Tuesday was in the stands to watch Nadal and was one of multiple notable attendees.
He said that he had in the back of his head that he was watching a unique moment that could be his last. But that it doesn't appear to be the case and that he seems him continuing. “It was great. Iga (Swiatek) was there, (Carlos) Alcaraz was there, and we all wanted to get a glimpse of the atmosphere of that possibly unique moment that could be his last. But it doesn’t appear like that,” said Djokovic.
“Yeah, it looks like. I think he played very well. Even though he lost in straight sets, the second and third were really close. He could have easily won one of those two sets, and maybe the match was going in a different direction.”
“He was a bit unlucky with the draw, because Zverev is in a great form, winning Rome, and he was serving extremely well,” added Djokovic. "It’s tough to play Sascha when he’s feeling the ball so well. But it was great to watch. I don’t recall last time I actually watched a set of any match live on that level, other than Davis Cup matches.”
Speaking of his own display, he said that he is pleased but isn't getting to carried away after getting burnt in the past. Next up is Roberto Carballes Baena. “In Monte-Carlo (beaten in the semi-finals), Rome (lost in the 3rd round) and Geneva (beaten in the semi-finals), I started the tournament really well. My first matches were great,” he added.
“But the second or third, it was something else… So I don’t want to get too excited. It was a good performance tonight from me."
“It was solid. I could have done better on the return games, but congratulations to him for serving very well. I felt better compared to the previous weeks. I’m moving in the right direction. But it’s only the beginning. It’s only one match. We have to see how I will progress in the tournament, how my feelings will evolve.”
“I’m happy with my state of mind on the court, it’s something I was looking for,” added Djokovic. "And where are you going to feel that if it’s not in the Grand Slams? I’ve been saying it over the last few years, the Grand Slam tournaments are the ones that make me get up every morning and go train. I hope to go far once again.”

Djokovic on Alcaraz, Swiatek, & himself watching Rafa Nadal’s match against Zverev, ‘We all wanted to get a glimpse of that possibly unique moment that could be his last, but it doesn’t appear like that’ “We saw you yesterday at the stadium watching Nadal's game. What did you…


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