Dominic Thiem’s former coach Gunter Bresnik feels Novak Djokovic will lose motivation without the constant competition from Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. The Swiss Maestro retired in 2022 after playing his last professional tournament in the Laver Cup for Team Europe.
On the other hand, Rafael Nadal suffered a hip injury in the Australian Open and he has been out of action since then. The Spaniard has confirmed that 2024 will be the last season for him on the tour.
Meanwhile, Djokovic lost the Wimbledon final against Carlos Alcaraz in a five-set thriller, and his winning streak at SW19 was broken as he was beaten at the championship for the first time since 2017.
Bresnik believes Djokovic didn’t play his best in the summit clash against Alcaraz.
“I cannot agree with that. The first set was totally bad, the fourth okay,” claimed Bresnik as quoted by Tennis Head. And I was surprised how carelessly Djokovic gave up the tie-break in round two. Novak didn’t play his best tennis throughout the match anyway.”
The Austrian coach added the likes of Andy Murray, Roger Federer, and Rafael Nadal got the best out of Novak Djokovic. In fact, the Serbian has also claimed on numerous occasions that Federer and Nadal pushed him to the limits and helped him rise in his career.
“I have the theory that the rivalries with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray drove him to top performances – of course that also applies to the others,” said the Austrian. “Not only in the match, but also in the time in between, during training or preparing for a match. And this rivalry does not exist with Alcaraz.”
Bresnik continued, “I have always said that Djokovic will lose motivation once there is no more constant competition with Nadal and Federer and he has won 23 Grand Slam titles. Alcaraz, on the other hand, played freely and finds it easier against the older ones, because they are on the decline. The branches are high, but descending.
“I’m still convinced that Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and maybe Murray played better at their best than Alcaraz is doing today.”
Bresnik added that the competition within the top 10 is not intense and Carlos Alcaraz stands out as he has been performing consistently.
“He’s [Alcaraz] lucky enough to take the stage when the best of all time are thinking of retiring, or have already done so. The level in the top ten isn’t the best at the moment either, and he’s the only one in his age group,” said Bresnik.
Djokovic has officially withdrawn from the Masters 1000 event in Toronto due to fatigue and he is likely to take part in Cincinnati before US Open.