Novak Djokovic is back in Serbia. Given the greater gentleness of the restriction measures in recent days, with a clearer picture when traveling throughout European territory, the Serbian has got down to work and has decided to organize a new tennis championship in his land, giving the opportunity not only to the biggest stars, but to lower profile players not to lose shape and compete under all the necessary health and safety measures. Thus is born the “Adria Tour”, an event tour in the Adriatic region that will start in the Serbian capital, Belgrade.
There, in the capital of his land, the number one in the world gave a press conference to SportKlub adapted with current prevention measures to analyze the launch of this small tour, its raison d’être, who will be present and in which cities it will have place. The first big bomb that Novak dropped was the confirmation of Alexander Zverev to dispute several dates, making it the third top-10 to dispute this championship that will start, in theory, on June 13. Along with Sascha, players of Novak’s own postin, Dominic Thiem, Grigor Dimitrov or Damir Dzumhur will also be from the game.
“I am very happy to be able to play in my country and to be able to travel throughout the entire region. There was little time to organize everything. The nature of this tournament is totally humanitarian, all proceeds will go to charity organizations, including my Foundation, for my part. The stars who play this tournament will decide, individually, to which organization to donate the benefits, “confessed a Novak who was very happy with the level that the Adria Tour will have.
“I am very happy with the incorporation of Sascha, that there are three world stars (he joins Dimitrov and Thiem) who can play in my hometown. All the players come here for free, because of the relationship I have with them and because of the humanitarian nature of this tournament. All three will play in Belgrade, Zverev will play in Croatia and Dimitrov will play in Croatia and Montenegro as well. ” And it is that the scenarios where the tournament will take place include several countries: Belgrade, Serbia during June 13 and 14; Zadar, Croatia on June 20 and 21, a place in Montenegro to be determined on June 27 and 28 and Banja Luka, Bosnia, from 3 to 4 July. The final icing on this tour will be put by Djokovic and Damir Dzumhur, with an exhibition match in Sarajevo on July 5.
Regarding how the tournament will take place, Novak is optimistic: “Hopefully the regulations will change from June 13 and we can have an audience. We respect the rules imposed by the Governments, and it is 100% sure that the dates of Belgrade and Zadar will be carried out. We want to play in Montenegro and Bosnia but it is not yet fully confirmed since the organization of these dates has started later. “But it is not only Novak that focuses on boys: his ambitious goal is to give various forms of competition the opportunity.
“We are considering the possibility of hosting a women’s tournamentWe want to play doubles, mixed doubles, doubles with legends like Goran Ivanisevic, but the ITF still doesn’t allow doubles to be disputed. “In addition, Djokovic confessed that he has been taking advantage of time at home during quarantine:” I had the opportunity to train everyone the days, since we had a hard court in the yard. I did not upload anything to social networks so as not to disturb other players. I worked on hard court and these last days on the ground, I feel good. I’m at the best moment of my careera, I am number one in the world and I have the opportunity to organize something like this. I hope it makes a good impression on the public, we all work around a noble goal. I don’t know what will happen in the future. “
Finally, the Serb made a rather important confession: he has been in constant contact with Federer and Nadal during this quarantine. Beware of what it reveals: “Rafa, Roger and I have communicated more than usual due to all the constant changes caused by this pandemic and in order to help lower-ranking players. Federer still has knee discomfortso I didn’t ask him about playing here. I know that Rafa has started training already, we talked last week about the Us Openbut I don’t think he wanted to come play here. ”