Novak Djokovic is one away from equalling Rafael Nadal’s record tally of 22, and a 10th triumph Down Under would secure this impressive feat.
Djokovic remains as hungry and driven as ever to equal Rafael Nadal’s Grand Slam record when the Australian Open begins on Monday.
“That’s why I keep on playing professional tennis, competition tennis, because I want to be the best, I want to win the biggest tournaments in the world. There is no secret about it,” Djokovic said in quotes published on ausopen.com.
“It doesn’t get bigger than this. You have four slams that historically have been the biggest events in our sport.
“It’s also one of the biggest reasons why I was really looking forward to come back to Australia: because of my record here.
“I really love playing in Rod Laver Arena, particularly night sessions. I’ve had plenty of success that hopefully can continue this year.”
The 35-year-old prepared for the first slam of the year by winning the Adelaide International, defeating Sebastian Korda in the final following victories over Denis Shapovalov and Daniil Medvedev.
“I’m in very good shape. I ended the year in the best possible way and continued that form in Adelaide,” he added. “I like the way I played there. I beat some really good players, especially in the last few matches of the tournament.”
Djokovic secured his 92nd career title whilst dealing with a troublesome hamstring, an injury picked up in that win over Medvedev.
However, the Serb insists he is coping well with the problem and hopes it will continue to improve ahead of Tuesday’s first-round clash against Roberto Carballes Baena.
“It’s hopefully not [of] major concern,” he explained. “So far I’ve been able to train, compete and play points, practise sets. So that’s a positive sign.
“Obviously, I’m being a bit more cautious. I’m not going full out on the training sessions, conserving the energy for next week. Hopefully it won’t cause an issue for me then.”