Novak Djokovic reveals his retirement plans, says, ‘I will leave tennis in about…’

At 36, Novak Djokovic has shown he’s not ready to pass the torch to the next generation just yet. With Roger Federer retired and Rafael Nadal planning to step away after the next season, the era of the ‘Big Three’ in tennis may be fading, but Djokovic, the last member of that triumvirate, proved his enduring prowess. His 6-3, 7-6(5), 6-3 victory over Daniil Medvedev at the U.S. Open marked his fourth Flushing Meadows title and equaled a record with his 24th Grand Slam crown. Djokovic clearly has his sights set on more accomplishments in tennis.

Djokovic said, “Occasionally asking myself, why do I need this still at this stage after all I have done, you know? How long do I want to keep going? I do have these questions in my head, of course” 

“Knowing that I play at such a high level still and I win the biggest tournaments in this sport, yeah, I don’t want to get rid of this sport or I don’t want to leave this sport if I’m still at the top.”

Djokovic defeated young American talents Taylor Fritz and Ben Shelton on his way to the final. He then confronted Daniil Medvedev, an older rival who had previously thwarted his calendar Grand Slam bid. Djokovic seized the chance, outlasting Medvedev in grueling rallies.

“My team, my family knew that the last 24 hours, don’t touch me, don’t speak to me about, you know, the history of what’s on the line,” he said.

“I really did my best to keep things quite simple and stick to the routines that brought me to where I am and treat this match really as any other match where I just need to win.”

He matched Nadal’s 22 major titles in Australia and claimed the men’s record by winning Roland Garros. A loss to Carlos Alcaraz at Wimbledon made Djokovic ponder a generational shift but his victories in Cincinnati and at Flushing Meadows reaffirmed his dominance in men’s tennis for the time being.

“You know, players come and go,” he said. “It will be the same kind of destiny for me. Eventually one day I will leave tennis in about 23, 24 years.

“And there is going to be new young players coming up. Until then, I guess you’ll see me a bit more.”

(With inputs from Reuters)

Related Premium Stories

Catch all the Sports News and Updates on Live Mint.
Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates & Live Business News.


Updated: 11 Sep 2023, 11:18 AM IST