Novak Djokovic is deeply patriotic and it stems from a pretty traumatic experience when he was younger as he grew up at times of war.
Back in 1998, as a teenager, Djokovic, witnessed his country being bombed, and it's something that impacted him not just back then but continues to impact him also to this day when he competes as a professional tennis player on the ATP Tour.
Djokovic remembers it clearly as it shaped him as a person- Part of his mental strength comes from that, even though he has a fair bit of trauma as well, especially around fireworks. It's the sound that reminds him of the bombs, and not too long ago, it was the Serbian whose match was interrupted because of fireworks.
"It could be, I don’t know to what extent but there’s definitely some connection and link to my upbringing. I was 12 when we had bombings for two and a half months day and night."
Djokovic talked about it during a recent appearance on The Today Show, where he also discussed missing his family and how tough it is to be away from them during his tennis career. It was a pretty emotional interview for Djokovic, who spoke openly about his experiences and life in general.
"Ah, at times it appears, mostly when I hear fireworks, when I hear that sound, it really reminds me of those bombs exploding so it’s not really super pleasant but you know still have a little bit of trauma."
The Australian Open recently concluded, and it's the first time in years that he hasn't been part of the final. It's certainly a strange situation for him, but it also motivates him to really give it his all in the coming months as he aims to add to his ever-growing legacy.