'He Is In Spain With His Family': Djokovic To Miss Serbia's Davis Cup Qualifying Rounds

'He Is In Spain With His Family': Djokovic To Miss Serbia's Davis Cup Qualifying Rounds

by Nurein Ahmed

Serbia's Davis Cup team captain, Viktor Troicki, announced that 24-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic will miss the country's Davis Cup qualifying round this weekend.

The 2010 champions will begin their quest to win a second Davis Cup in Kraljevo on Friday, February 2nd, against Slovakia. Troicki, who was part of Serbia's winning team over a decade ago, has compiled the squad to take to the court.

Chief among them is Miomir Kecmanovic, the country's best payer in the absence of Djokovic. Kecmanovic will hope to translate last year's late-season form to the tie against the Slovaks. He'll be supported by Laslo Djere, Dusan Lajovic, and Nikola Cacic.

The 2023 Next Gen champion Hamad Medjedovic misses out due to illness. In an interview with Sportal, Troicki stated that Djokovic is currently in Spain spending time with his family and will, therefore, miss the qualifying tie. He also ruled out the possibility of him joining the cheering squad.

"I don't believe he will come (to cheer for his countrymen), he is in Spain with his family."

Djokovic is currently recovering from a grueling Australian summer in which he failed to inspire Serbia's bid in the mixed-team competition, the United Cup. Moreover, he exhibited problems with his wrist and ended up losing his first match on Australian soil since 2018 to Alex de Minaur.

Djokovic did not report any concerns with the same injury thereafter but battled a viral infection at the Australian Open, struggling to put away 18-year-old qualifier Dino Prizmic in the first round. Although his level steadily improved, he was second best in his semifinal defeat to Jannik Sinner.

Troicki believes Sinner was a lot "freer" in their latest encounter, having beaten Djokovic just a few months earlier in the semifinal of the Davis Cup in Malaga, and the 37-year-old opined that his countryman was far from his best level during the fortnight.

"Sinner was freer in that match in Australia because he won it the last time in Malaga and he pulled off that duel incredibly. I should say, he was more relieved. But Nole was not, let's say, convincing from the beginning of the tournament, somehow we haven't seen his sharpness since the start of the competition. I think he can do much better than that and he himself is aware of it."

A lot has been written about that defeat in which Djokovic failed to create a single breakpoint chance - the first time in a completed Grand Slam match in his career. Additionally, Djokovic admitted to being "shocked" by his performance. Trocki, however, is backing his countryman to bounce back.

"Of course, he is a man and not a machine, we cannot always expect him to win every Grand Slam. Young players are getting better and better, they are freer, they are progressing: Sinner, Alcaraz, Medvedev, the same constant. It is not easy to maintain that continuity and always be in top form. That's obvious. Unfortunately, he lost this time, but we all know he doesn't give up and I'm sure he'll be back soon."


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