July 7, 2022

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Novak Djokovic 'loses' to Neymar Jr as Serb prepares for comeback at Monte Carlo Masters

Novak Djokovic has already suffered a “loss” on the Monte Carlo Masters forward of his return to tennis. The world No 1 had a kick about with PSG stars Neymar Jr and Marco Verratti, who had been in Monaco to observe the tennis on Monday – and he was the primary to drop the ball throughout a keepy-ups sport. The primary Masters 1000 of the clay swing shall be simply Djokovic’s second event of the 2022 season, and he faces Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in his opening match.

Djokovic is lastly again in motion this week in Monte Carlo, the place he resides together with his household. The world No 1 was unable to play the Australian Open, Indian Wells or Miami over his unvaccinated standing and has accomplished only one event this season: the Dubai Championships the place he misplaced to qualifier Jiri Vesely within the quarter-finals.

As the highest seed, the two-time former champion in Monte Carlo advantages from a bye direct to the second spherical the place he’ll face world No 46 Davidovich Fokina, seemingly on Tuesday afternoon. The 20-time Main champion was on the grounds on Monday the place he could possibly be seen watching a few of the matches from the balcony alongside Lorenzo Sonego.

Additionally on the Monte Carlo Nation Membership on Monday had been PSG stars Neymar Jr and Verratti, who had been out on Courtroom Rainier III to observe the latter’s countryman Fabio Fognini clinch a three-set victory in opposition to Arthur Rinderknech. After the match, the pair went to fulfill Djokovic for a sport of keepy-uppies with an enormous tennis ball.

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“I miss competitors. I nonetheless really feel motivation to be on the tour and compete with younger guys and attempt to problem for the largest titles,” the two-time former Monte Carlo champion mentioned forward of his marketing campaign. “The final 4 to 5 months have been actually difficult for me mentally and emotionally, however I’ll attempt to depart all of that behind and transfer on.”

Admitting that he was nonetheless trying to alter after enjoying few aggressive matches this season, he added: “I’m testing my engine, so to say, and constructing my sport, so it should take clearly a while, some matches to actually get within the groove and discover the aggressive play that I actually need. Roland Garros is the last word objective in clay courtroom season.”