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Djokovic ‘cleared out of the way’ for Nadal says…

Novak Djokovic suffers crushing blow as Rafael Nadal plan outlined by coach
Novak Djokovic Rafael Nadal.

 

 

Novak Djokovic was overtaken by Rafael Nadal in the all-time Grand Slam charts last month.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC has hit a major hurdle on his quest to collect the most Grand Slam titles in tennis history.

Djokovic ‘cleared out of the way’ for Nadal says host.

Novak Djokovic has been dealt a crushing blow in his bid to pip Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the race to secure the most Grand Slam titles in men’s tennis history. The Spaniard won last month’s Australian Open, and according to his coach Carlos Moya, he may not be done yet.

Djokovic’s controversial deportation following his medical vaccine exemption fiasco allowed Nadal to battle to the top prize in Melbourne without having to face the imperious Serb, who has won the Aussie Open on nine prior occasions.

In beating Daniil Medvedev after a five-set epic, Nadal claimed his first Australian Open crown since 2009, and became the first man to reach 21 Grand Slam titles.

With Federer still out injured and Djokovic likely to run into more vaccine complications, Moya’s comments suggest that now could be the perfect time to capitalise.

“What Rafa is looking for is to be competitive and continue to evolve,” Moya told Punto de Break.

“It is true that over time you lose physique, speed or explosiveness, but you are smarter and handle situations better.

“I always said that Rafa is one of the most intelligent players on the court, one of those who read the games best, the one who is most suited to having a Plan B, a Plan C. I would tell you that he has the whole alphabet.

“When I arrived in 2016 he was 30-years-old, but I have a medium-long-term vision. He trusted that he would evolve in a number of ways so that he would still have a long way to go.

“We had a talk and I saw him very motivated, wanting to win Grand Slams again, there I was convinced that anything could happen.

“If he wanted to extend his career, he had to take risks, so the credit goes to him for always being open to change.

“It’s not good to obsess [over winning the most Grand Slams]; yes, get motivated obviously, he is not going to give up on 22, if the opportunity arises he will fight for it.”

Indeed, Nadal’s renewed longevity has arrived at the perfect time to pull clear of the chasing duo, with Federer set to sit out the entire clay court season after major knee surgery.

Carlos Moya discussed his plan to extend Rafael Nadal’s career
Djokovic may also find it tough to compete unless his Covid vaccine stance changes.

Although not a Grand Slam, his ability to turn out at Indian Wells next month is in serious doubt due to the United States’ Covid vaccine entry requirements.

The Serb could attempt to draw level with Nadal on 21 major titles at the French Open if his positive Covid test in December successfully earns him a vaccine passport, but that would require him to pip the 35-year-old on his favoured stomping ground.

With each of the ‘big three’ in the twilights of their careers, each Grand Slam is now hugely important when it comes to who retires with the highest total, and as of right now, Moya’s comments suggest that Nadal has the upper hand.

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