Few players have ever taken part in the roaring start that world No. 1 Novak Djokovic secured for himself during the first third of the year. In fact, no one has ever managed to win the first three Masters 1000 titles of the year I consecutive fashion, which is just what he completed on Sunday afternoon in Monte Carlo. To top that off, he also won the season-opening Grand Slam in Melbourne, which only serves as more proof that the Serbian star is in near-unstoppable form at the moment.
With much to be thankful for in his life, both personally and professionally, Djokovic has formulated a new outlook on life, which he believes has helped him compartmentalize his success and use it to his advantage.
“I’m 27,” said Djokovic. “Obviously I’m experiencing the time of my life on the tennis court, and also private life is very good. I became a father. I’m just trying to sometimes pinch myself and say, ‘Where am I at this point in my life?’ I’m very grateful for this, for everything that I have. That’s the kind of philosophy.”
Following his 6-3, 6-3, victory over clay court specialist Rafael Nadal, Djokovic overcame a determined Berdych in the tournament final to close out the victory in three sets in a total of two hours and 43 minutes. While it was not the prettiest of matches for the top seed, he was able to fight through it and secure the victory, even when not playing his best tennis.
“I was just trying to stay with the right intensity and focus for each point because obviously you get tense when you’re not feeling so comfortable on the court. When you start missing, you kind of back up. I had to adjust my position and movement on the court several times. In the end I’m sitting here with this trophy that is very special to me. This is what matters. Sometimes winning ugly is necessary. It’s been a remarkable start of the season for me. I couldn’t ask for a better start of clay court season.”
Now that he has armed himself with a fresh perspective on himself and his life, Djokovic plans on using his recent success as a form of motivation and incentive to complete the year in grand fashion.
“The fact that now I won (the first) three Masters 1000 in a row and nobody ever has done that, of course I’m aware of that. That has given me more motivation. I’m very proud of what I have achieved. It can only serve as an incentive, imperative for what’s coming up.”