World No. 1 Novak Djokovic admits his pursuit of Roger Federer’s singles titles record played a part in his decision to play in the US Open, despite ongoing concerns surrounding the health and safety of the event.
Seventeen-time Grand Slam champion Djokovic remains just three wins behind Federer’s record of 20 Slam wins, and he told the New York Times that his decision to play the event beginning Aug. 31 was “of course” influenced by his desire to catch the Swiss great’s tally.
“One of the reasons why I keep on playing professional tennis on this level is because I want to reach more heights in the tennis world,” Djokovic said.
Djokovic, 33, has been in fine form recently, winning five of the last seven men’s singles Grand Slams, but only confirmed his attendance at the US Open once he was assured the players returning to Europe afterward wouldn’t be required to enter quarantine, which would affect his ability to play on the European circuit.
“I was very close to not coming,” he said, confirming that he only came to a final decision in recent days.
“There were a lot of uncertainties.” (RT)