Novak Djokovic’s father has again slammed the media, claiming that they are “constantly bothered” by the Serb superstar while admitting that he does not watch the tennis number one’s matches and calling Roger Federer a lesser man.
Protective dad Srdjan Djokovic has frequently felt compelled to publicly defend the all-time great, not least during a year in which the world number one has suffered a barrage of negative media coverage over incidents including his ill-fated Adria Tour event and disqualification from the US Open for hitting a line judge with a ball.
While Djokovic is almost unfailingly diplomatic about his two main rivals, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, his father has been far more forthright about the Swiss, saying that any debate over his talents on court does not extend to comparisons away from the sport.
“Obviously, they don’t have the best opinion of us and we are constantly bothering them,” Nova quoted Djokovic to have said about the coverage.
“To tell you the truth, I don’t want to be a part of their world. It seems to me that their world is twisted.
“They slander him so much. They say so many disgusting things about him that it’s just amazing. We will never have such a champion again.
“I’m really sorry that they don’t like [me speaking out]. I’m just telling the truth, which they don’t like. What should I do?”
Djokovic senior is no stranger to offering his unflinching views. Asked about Djokovic surpassing Federer’s record of 310 weeks at the top of the men’s ranking last month, he argued that Federer had known the teenage Djokovic “would be better than him” from an early age.
“I said then that he was a great champion,” added the man who has supported Djokovic from his earliest days as a rising star of the game.
“[Federer was] the best at that time. But as much as he is a great champion, he is not as good a man.
“[Djokovic] took the best [characteristics] from me and my wife [Diana]. From me, courage and bravery, and from his mother, calmness and composure.
“When he comes across a wall, he stops and thinks, and I hit my head until I faint. That’s why I don’t watch his matches anymore.
“I watched maybe a few minutes of the Australian Open final [when Djokovic beat Russian Daniil Medvedev in straight sets in February].
“I’m staring around. I’m just waiting for the set to end – ‘let me know’. Diana was watching – women are stronger than us.”
Djokovic has won four more matches than Federer in their 50 meetings and has a more emphatic lead in the finals the icons have played against each other, winning 13 of their 19 deciding showdowns.
“I only compare myself to myself from 15 years ago,” Djokovic was said to have insisted to Serbian news outlet Blic. “Because in all other comparisons, we start to get lost.
“As far as I’m concerned, I stopped comparing myself with others about five years ago. I don’t want to compare myself with anyone at all.”
“I write my authentic life story becuase I am the only one who knows me 100 per cent.
“That’s why I know what I want to achieve, what I want to do with my life, who I want to become.”