Novak Djokovic, Serbian tennis player who turned professional in 2003. An up-and-coming player at 20 years of age, Djokovichas already proven himself to be an all-court player with an abundance of talent. His major achievements have come in 2007, where he was the runner-up at the U.S. Open and reached three Masters Series finals, winning in Miami and Montréal. Also, he reached the semifinals at French Open and Wimbledon. His highest ranking on the ATP Tour is World No. 3, which he reached on July 9, 2007.
Novak Djokovic was born May 22, 1987 in Belgrade, then-Yugoslavia. He is the oldest child of father Srdjan and mother Dijana. In addition to Novak, there are two younger sons, Djordje and Marko. Djokovic started playing tennis at age 4, and when 12 he attended the Nikola Pili? Academy (for tennis) in Munich. Djokovic speaks Serbian, German and English.
He resides in Monte Carlo, Monaco and is coached by a former Slovak tennis player, Marián Vajda.
He often does humorous off-court impersonations of his fellow players, many of whom he is friends with. This became evident to the tennis world after his 2007 US Open quarterfinal win over Carlos Moyà, where he entertained the audience with impersonations of Rafael Nadal, Andy Roddick and Maria Sharapova.
In the beginning of this professional career, Djokovic mainly played in Futures and Challenger tournaments, winning three of each type of tournament.
He participated in the 2006 Hopman Cup with fellow Serbian player Ana Ivanovic where the pairing narrowly missed the final.
He continued his great run in 2006 by shooting up the rankings. In May 2006, various reports appeared in the British media about Novak's mother Dijana reportedly approaching Britain's Lawn Tennis Association about her son joining British tennis ranks and the possibility of their entire 5-person family moving from Serbia to live in Britain. All the rumours didn't affect ?okovi?'s play, however. He started 2006 ranked 78th, but with an excellent run to the quarter-finals in Roland Garros and a 4th round at Wimbledon, he found himself in the top 40. Just three weeks after Wimbledon he won his maiden title in Amersfoort without losing a set defeating Nicolás Massú in the final. ?okovi? won his second career title in Metz and with this victory moved into the top 20 for the first time in his career.
Djokovic began a successful year by winning in Adelaide, defeating Australian Chris Guccione in the final. At the 2007 Australian Open, he reached the fourth round, where he lost to eventual champion Roger Federer in straight sets.
In 2007, his performances in the Masters Series events at Indian Wells and Miami, where he was runner-up and champion respectively, pushed him well into the world's top ten. In those tournaments, which were his first and second Masters finals, he defeated fellow rising star Andy Murray in the semi finals without dropping a set in either match. He lost the Indian Wells final to Rafael Nadal, but avenged this defeat by beating Nadal in the Miami event, before defeating the resurgent Guillermo Cañas in the final (6-3, 6-2, 6-4). He later played in the prestigious Monte Carlo Open, only to be defeated by David Ferrer in his third round match in straight sets. He reached the quarterfinals of both Rome and Hamburg Masters, but lost to Carlos Moyà and Nadal, respectively. At the tournament in Estoril, ?okovi? defeated frenchman Richard Gasquet 7-6, 0-6, 6-1, in the final.
At the French Open he reached his first Grand Slam semifinal ever, where he lost to eventual champion Rafael Nadal.
During the 2007 Wimbledon Championships, he won an epic match against Marcos Baghdatis in the quarter finals. The match ended 7-6(4), 7-6(9), 6-7(3), 4-6, 7-5 and lasted 5 hours, just 5 minutes shy of the longest singles match in a single day in Wimbledon history. In his semi-final match, he was forced to retire against Rafael Nadal due to a back injury and foot problem.
He garnered further success in the Masters Series, winning the Canada Masters. In the final he defeated top seeded Roger Federer 7-6(2), 2-6, 7-6(2). In reaching the championship, he achieved the remarkable feat of defeating the World Nos. 1, 2 and 3 (Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Roddick, respectively) on three consecutive days. This is the first time a player has accomplished this since Boris Becker in 1994. Moreover, ?okovi? became only the 2nd person, after Tomáš Berdych, to have defeated both Federer and Nadal since they became the dominant #1 and #2 players in the world. His successful performance made Björn Borg state that Djokovic "is definitely a contender to win a Grand Slam." However, Djokovic 's appearance the following week at the Cincinnati Masters, resulted disappointingly with a straight-set loss to Carlos Moyà in the 2nd round.
He nevertheless came to the 2007 US Open with a lot of confidence and expectation and reached the final where he lost to World no. 1 Roger Federer 7-6(4), 7-6(2), 6-4. On his way to the final, Djokovic won an epic 5-set (6-7(4) 7-6(5) 5-7 7-5 7-6(2)) 2nd round match against Radek Št?pánek after nearly 5 hours of play.
After recovering from a minor injury, Djokovic won his fifth title of the year at the BA-CA TennisTrophy in Vienna, defeating Stanislas Wawrinka in the final. Djokovic's next tournament was the Mutua Madrileña Masters in Madrid, where he lost to David Nalbandian in the semifinals 6–4, 7–6(4). At the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, he was upset by Frenchman Fabrice Santoro.
Djokovic, then assured of finishing the year as World No. 3 and for the first time, he qualified for the Tennis Masters Cup. Djokovic was the first player to arrive. He was also the first player to exit the tournament, losing all three of his round-robin matches in straight sets. He lost to Ferrer 6–4, 6–4; Gasquet 6–4, 6–2; and Nadal 6–4, 6–4.
Djokovic started the year by playing the Hopman Cup along with fellow Serbian World Number 3 Jelena Jankovi?. He won all of his round-robin matches and the team, seeded number one, reached the final. They lost 2–1 to the second-seeded American team consisting of Serena Williams and Mardy Fish.
At the Australian Open, Djokovic would make it to the finals of the tournament without losing a set. Along the way, he defeated the top-seeded and defending champion Roger Federer in the semifinals 7–5, 6–3, 7–6(5). This ended Federer's streak of 10 consecutive Grand Slam final appearances. Djokovic also became the first person to beat Federer in straight sets in a Grand Slam tournament since Gustavo Kuerten at the 2004 French Open. Djokovic then defeated unseeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the final to earn Serbia's and his first ever Grand Slam singles title. At the age of 20 years and 250 days, he was the youngest male to win the Australian Open singles title since Stefan Edberg in 1985. This win also enabled him to surpass US$6 million in career prize money.
At the Open 13 tournament in Marseille, Djokovic was upset by Frenchman Gilles Simon in the second round 6–2, 6–7(6), 6–3. Djokovic's next tournament was the Dubai Duty Free Men's Open, where he lost in the semifinals to World No. 6 Andy Roddick 7–6(5), 6–3.
At the Masters Series Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, California, Djokovic won his ninth career singles title, defeating American Mardy Fish in the three-set final. At the Masters Series Sony Ericsson Open in Key Biscayne, Florida, Djokovic was upset in the second round by Kevin Anderson 7–6, 3–6, 6–4.
On red clay at the Monte Carlo Masters, Djokovic retired from his semifinal match with Federer while trailing 6–3, 3–2. However, two weeks later, Djokovic won his tenth career singles title and fourth Master Series singles crown at the Internazionali d'Italia in Rome after defeating Stanislas Wawrinka in the final. The following week at the Hamburg Masters, Djokovic lost to Nadal in a three-hour semifinal match 7–5, 2–6, 6–2.
At the French Open in Paris, Djokovic was the third-seeded player behind Federer and Nadal. Djokovic lost to Nadal in the semifinals 6–4, 6–2, 7–6(3). He once again played Nadal, this time in the Artois Championships final in Queen's Club, London, losing 7–6(6), 7–5.
At Wimbledon, Djokovic was the third seeded player; however, he lost in the second round in straight sets to former World No. 1, but unseeded, Marat Safin 6–4, 7–6(3), 6–2.
Djokovic then failed to defend his 2007 singles title at the Masters Series Rogers Cup in Toronto. He was eliminated in the quarterfinals by eighth-seeded Andy Murray 6–3, 7–6(3). The following week at the Western & Southern Financial Group Masters in Cincinnati, Ohio, Djokovic advanced to the final after having beaten World No. 2 Nadal in the semifinals 6-1, 7-5, ending the Spaniard's 32-match winning streak. In the final, he lost to Andy Murray, 7–6(4), 7–6(5).
His next tournament was the Beijing Olympics, his first Summer Olympics. He and Nenad Zimonji?, seeded second in men's doubles, were eliminated in the first round by the Czech pairing of Martin Damm and Pavel Vízner. Seeded third in singles, Djokovic lost in the semifinals to Nadal, the eventual champion, 6–4, 1–6, 6–4. Djokovic then defeated James Blake, the loser of the other semifinal, in the bronze medal match 6–3, 7–6(4).
After the Olympics, Djokovic entered the US Open as the #3 seed. During his fourth round match with Tommy Robredo, he was plagued by problems related to both a hip injury, for which he required two time-outs, and exhaustion. Nevertheless, he would go on and win the match in a tough five setter, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 5-7, 6-3. A controversial incident would eventually happen when #8 seed Andy Roddick said in a press conference that Djokovic was "either quick to call a trainer or the most courageous guy of all time", insinuating that his opponent had a reputation for being injured, as well as giving a list of ailments he thought Djokovic might have. After defeating Roddick, 6-2, 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(5), in the quarterfinals, he was booed on the court during in a courtside interview, after sarcastically saying "Andy was saying that I have 16 injuries in the last match, obviously I don't, right?" Djokovic would later apologize to Roddick, saying that it was a misunderstanding.His run at the US Open ended at the semifinals when he faced Roger Federer, losing 6–3, 5–7, 7–5, 6–2 in a rematch of the 2007 US Open final.
At the finals of the Thailand Open, in a rematch of the 2008 Australian Open final, he lost to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in straight sets, 7-6(4), 6-4.
He was upset in the third round of the Mutua Madrileña Masters in Madrid by Croat Ivo Karlovi? in straight sets, 7-6(4), 7-6(5) without any breaks of serve during the match. Two weeks later at the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, he lost in the third round once again to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, losing 4-6, 6-1, 3-6.
In November, Djokovic entered the Tennis Masters Cup in Shanghai as the number 2 seed. In his first round robin match, he defeated Argentine Del Potro in straight sets, 7-5, 6-3. He would then go on and beat Nikolay Davydenko in 3 sets, 7-6(3), 0-6, 7-5. Later, he would lose his final round robin match aginst Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 6-1, 5-7, 1-6. However, by having a round robin record of 2-1, Djokovic found his way into the semi-finals of the tournament. In the semi-finals, he defeated Gilles Simon 4-6, 6-3, 7-5. In the final, Djokovic defeated Nikolay Davydenko once again to win his first ever year-end Tennis Masters Cup title
He is good friends with fellow junior graduate (and sometimes doubles partner) Andy Murray, who was part of the Great Britain team that Serbia and Montenegro defeated in the Davis Cup in Glasgow in April 2006. Djokovic got the decisive win on 9th April, by defeating Greg Rusedski in four sets in the fourth match, giving his team a 3-1 lead in their best of 5 series. He now represents Serbia, as the country gained independence in June 2006. By winning all of his three matches, Djokovic played a key role in the 2007 play-off win over Australia, promoting Serbia to World Group in 2008.
?okovi? is sponsored by Wilson and Adidas. He uses a heavily customised Wilson n-Blade equipped with a hybrid of Technifibre and Wilson strings. Djokovic also wears the Adidas Barricade IV shoe.