Novak Djokovic

Rome, May 15 (IANS) Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic on Monday said he remains as motivated as ever to reclaim his old position at top of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) rankings, although he has not played his best match this year.

“I felt that the start of the season went really well for me this year,” Djokovic said at a press conference from Foro Italico where he will play the Masters 1000 tournament in Rome, according to the ATP official website.

He added that he is working hard to get back to his best level.

The Serbian, who was beaten on Saturday in the Madrid Open semifinal by Spaniard Rafael Nadal, was satisfied overall with his performances in the tournament, expressing his desire to improve even more before kicking off his first match at the Italian Open.

“Mentally I felt better and better as time went by. My game just hasn’t been there. I’m happy I reached the semi-finals in Madrid, which has been my best result this year. It shows me I’m on the right path,” he said.

“We’ll see whether this week is going to give me that springboard into where I want to be in the next six months, or if it’s going to take a little longer, I don’t know. What I know for sure is that I’m doing my very best to rediscover myself in a new way and get the new strength and the new skin, so to speak,” he explained.

Djokovic recently broke off his association with his coaching staff, playing in Madrid accompanied on the bench by his brother, Marko, and he said on Monday that he has not yet decided who will be his next coach.

“The decision to split with my team was a big one and I needed that change for my mindset. There have not been many players who have been with their tennis coach, fitness coach and physiotherapist for 10 years. The overall goals, dreams and aspirations are of course still the same,” he concluded.

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