Back in Serbia, Djokovic ready for new Adria Tour

Tennis

Back in Serbia after a two-month stay in Spain amid the coronavirus pandemic, Novak Djokovic says he’s in good shape and ready to play.

Before the season resumes in earnest, Djokovic will play in a round-robin tournament that he is organizing, the Adria Tour, which is slated to begin June 13. Djokovic announced the event’s plans on social media last week, and on Monday, he was finally able to hold a news conference back home.

“Unlike many other players, I was able to train almost every day because we resided in a house with a tennis court,” said Djokovic, who stayed in the Spanish resort city of Marbella while international travel was limited. “I refrained from posting clips on social networks because I didn’t want to infuriate other players.

“I am fit and in good shape. So I am looking forward to the Adria Tour.”

The event, which will run through July 5 in the Balkan region, will feature some name players, Djokovic said, and his hope is that a limited number of spectators can be on hand as well.

“We would dearly love for fans to be able to attend,” he said, “but that’s still not certain because we have to abide by the Serbian government’s coronavirus regulations.”

Dominic Thiem, Grigor Dimitrov and Alexander Zverev are among Djokovic’s invitees. Djokovic, who turned 33 last week, will close the event with a special exhibition against Damir Dzumhur.

“As for Rafael Nadal, I have no problem giving him a call,” he said, “but I wouldn’t expect him to come over.”

Djokovic won his 17th Grand Slam event at the Australian Open and was 18-0 before play was paused this year. He was the world’s No. 1 player when ATP rankings were frozen on March 23.

No professional tournaments have been played since March. The French Open is postponed, and Wimbledon was canceled.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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