Gaining popularity and the love of the crowd is a goal that Novak Djokovic is trying to achieve, perhaps snatching fans from his two great rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. "Conquer the crowd and you will conquer freedom," said Proximus to Maximus Decimus Meridius in the movie Gladiator.
Realty is not far away from the movie. Novak Djokovic ended up in the eye of the hurricane after the Adria Tour, organized without regard for the rules on social distancing. The exhibition event was interrupted following the positivity to the virus of four players, including the same World number 1 and his wife Jelena.
If this were not enough, the statements of Nole's father Srdjan, who blamed Grigor Dimitrov for the incident and for having muddied the reputation of the Djokovic's family, also made a lot of discussion. The father of the Serb champion had also attracted several criticisms for having advised Roger Federer to retire and devote himself to something else.
Former Olympic gold medalist Marc Rosset recently confided that Djokovic should take better care of what his family says in public.
Rosset on Novak Djokovic
"Taking up the chronology of the last days, there has already been the release of his father on Roger Federer which I find inadmissible.
Even if you love your son more than anything world, you can't take out stuff like that," said Marc Rosset. "If my father had said that, I would have come home and stuck a pie on him! You can't talk about someone like that.
It's simply stupid. Novak Djokovic is a pretty divisive player, whatever he says. I also have the impression that he feeds on that. I do not judge the person because everyone has their sources of motivation and their beliefs.
But, from a general point of view, Novak Djokovic remains an enigma. It's hard for him to compete with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal from a popularity standpoint. I can understand how frustrating it is for him. He is World No.
1 and a great player, but he faces two legends. But, between the declarations of his father and the problems of the Adria Tour, he did not score points with the crowd and fans. And, above all, it doesn't help the image of tennis, "he said.
Shortly before the start of the Adria Tour, Djokovic, who is also president of the player council of the men's ATP Tour, angered some players by suggesting he may not take part in the US Open in New York at the end of August because organizers said they wanted to limit player entourages to just one extra person.
In April, he raised eyebrows for saying he was against the idea of having to be vaccinated for Covid-19 as a possible prerequisite to play on Tour again.