Novak Djokovic on US Open disqualification: I cannot promise it will be a one-off
Novak Djokovic’s disqualification at the US Open was one of the most memorable incidents in recent tennis history, and now the Serbian world number one is looking to brush off that disappointment when playing in the Italian Open before targeting a second French Open – where he is second favourite behind Rafael Nadal.
Novak Djokovic of Serbia tends to a line judge who was hit with the ball during his Men's Singles fourth round match against Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain on Day Seven of the 2020 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 6,
The Serbian has little time to mull over his disqualification, with the Italian Open taking place this week before the French Open starts next Monday, but when asked to reflect on the incident he said it was possible he could do it again.
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“Of course it was a shock to finish the US Open the way things finished for me,” he told reporters. “Of course it could have happened earlier in my career, it could have happened to many players.
“It was just unfortunate it did hit the line umpire in an unfortunate place. There was a lot of speculation about whether it was deserved. I accepted it, I moved on.
I cannot promise or cannot guarantee that I will never ever do anything similar to that in my life. I'm going to try my best, obviously, but anything is possible in life.
Djokovic added: “I felt really sorry to cause the shock and drama to her. I felt very good about myself, my game.
Djokovic scuse su Instagram dopo squalifica dallo US Open
Image credit: Eurosport
“It was totally unexpected and very unintended but, when you hit the ball like that, you have a chance to hit somebody that is on the court.
“I accepted it and I had to move on. Of course I didn't forget about it, I don't think I'll ever forget about it.”
Djokovic is targeting a fifth Italian Open title and first since 2015 before he bids to end his four-year wait for a second French Open.
The 33-year-old heads into next week’s Grand Slam as second favourite behind Rafael Nadal, and Djokovic is pleased to have tournaments so soon after his New York disappointment.
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Djokovic said: “I don't think I'll have any major issues coming back to the tour and being able to perform well. I have my first chance here in Rome.
“It's great I think I have a tournament a week or 10 days after it happened because I feel the earlier I get back in competition mode the faster I'll overcome the memory and re-programme it. I'm hoping for the best.
“I spent some time with my family and I looked at my shoulder that I hurt a little bit when I fell down. It's OK for now so I'm going to be playing Rome and hopefully getting far here.”