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Maria Sharapova: ‘I have to be tough on myself and expect more’

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Maria Sharapova had a good run in Madrid, reaching the quarter-finals where she lost to Kiki Bertens. The Russian exactly knows the keys to return at a good level again, and she explained them in her post-match press conference after the match on Thursday.

‘I think there are definitely a few that I can take away from this. But also I look at these types of matches, I see a lot of things I should be better at, I should improve at. I think it’s a combination of, yes, taking the positives, but also being a little tough on yourself and expecting a little bit more from yourself,’ Sharapova admitted.

‘That’s the only way to improve. You can’t keep giving yourself a pat on the back. Of course, it was great to get those wins against those few players. But there’s a reason I came up short today. You want to also evaluate that and go back to the drawing board and start over again.’ Speaking about the things she needed to improve, Sharapova said: ‘I was just a little slow on that.

Just a little hesitant. Some of those opportunities. Keep improving the return. A much better week on that for me this week. But I think there’s a lot more work I can do on that. It’s a few percentages here and there. It’s little margins.’

Sharapova also explained she had a tough few weeks after Indian Wells in March: ‘I think I don’t know many people that would be like, Let’s keep going.

It was really tough. I was willing to make changes, willing to get back out there, willing to put in the work. I think that attitude certainly helps, that perspective on things. When you do it for yourself, when you try to make the right decisions for yourself in a very selfish sport, maybe somehow, in the end, it works out.

I think we all try to make little adjustments to make ourselves better. But, of course, it’s so nice to play when you can hold the racquet in your left hand when you’re not worried about other things when you can just play tennis.

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‘I expect him to pass Roger Federer’, says top journalist

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Novak Djokovic won the Australian Open for the ninth time in his career and took his eighteenth major last week. The Serbian champion has thus brought himself within two distances of the Slam record of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who are currently at 20.

The Big Three have fueled the passion of the fans and constantly made the world of tennis grow thanks to their talent and their successes. It is therefore no coincidence that the debate on who is the best has become one of the biggest questions.

In a recent interview, renowned American sports journalist Steve Flink revealed that Djokovic would go beyond 20 Grand Slam titles. He also believes that Djoker will easily surpass Federer in near future.

 

Flink on the Big 3’s era
“I think Novak Djokovic’ll go beyond 20,” began Steve Flink.

 

 

“I expect him to pass Roger Federer, I really do. The question to me is how many more Roland Garros does Rafael Nadal win? Because that could be the settling factor. If Rafa wins this year and next year to get to 22, then that means Djokovic has to have four more just to tie.

 

 

If Rafa wins only one of the two or if a miracle happens and he doesn’t win either one, I don’t know. It makes me think that likelihood is that Djokovic and Nadal could end up in a tie or Rafa could end up potentially one ahead of Djokovic.

But, I expect them both to pass Federer,” concluded the American journalist. Roger Federer will return to the court after almost a year. In a situation like this, it’ll definitely be difficult for him to compete with players who are almost half of his age and win Grand Slam titles.

Novak Djokovic recently won his 18th Grand Slam title at the Australian Open 2021. It was the ninth Australian Open title for the Serbian legend, and many experts are even calling him the ‘King of the Melbourne Park’ now.

However, it is not just at the Grand Slams at which he is excelling; he has now achieved another unique feat as well. With his victory at the Australian Open 2021, World No.1 Novak Djokovic has won 82 ATP tournaments so far out of 258.

This is magnificent, as he has a whopping win percentage of 31.78%. He recently surpassed 11-time Grand Slam winner Bjorn Borg, who had a win percentage of 31.73% as he had won 66 tournaments out of 208. Only the Australian legend and 11-time Grand Slam champion Rod Laver has a better win percentage than Djoker from the Open Era players.

Laver won 71 tournaments out of his 211 appearances at ATP events. Thus, he is at the top of the list with a win percentage of 33.64%.

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‘Looked at differently’: Coach’s racism claims about Novak Djokovic

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Novak Djokovic’s coach has let rip at the way World No.1 was treated throughout the last year following his Australian Open title.

Djokovic claimed his 18th Grand Slam title after his incredibly dominant Australian Open title charge last month.

community after he was outspoken on quarantine conditions regarding some players.

This has prompted coach Goran Ivanisevic to liken Djokovic’s treatment, following the ill-fated Adria Tour during the coronavirus pandemic, to the cult horror film a ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’.

He even went as far as to claim an element of the treatment is racist because he comes from Serbia.

“Everything started with the Adria Tour; they were after him even before that, but in the last year it seemed to me as if I am watching that film The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” he told Tennis Majors, while laughing.

“Why is he being treated that way? Probably because of his background, people from Balkans are always looked at differently; also, Novak is not afraid to speak his mind and to fight for causes he believes in.”

Novak Djokovic’s injury critics ‘sad’
At the US Open last year, Djokovic was defaulted after accidentally hitting a ball at a lines judge.

This prompted fierce backlash for the World No.1 after he was eliminated.

But coach Ivanisevic said people wanted to see Djokovic’s downfall at the US Open.

He also said Djokovic was the only one to step up for his current players in Australia.

“What happened at the US Open, it was as if everyone was glad because that kind of s**t happened to him. In Australia he stood up for his fellow players and again – let’s kick Djokovic because he is the only one to speak up, everyone else stays silent,” he said.

He also addressed the latest furore, surrounding Djokovic’s injury halfway through the Australian Open tournament.

Many accused Djokovic of playing up the injury, which occurred during the match against American Taylor Fritz in the Third Round.

But this was preposterous, according to his coach.

He said people accusing Djokovic of an injury was “the saddest thing” and claimed if other players were injured and overcame the problem they would be praised.

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