Novak Djokovic told retirement condition as Serb’s career given expiry date

Novak Djokovic has been given a retirement date as a former Serbian professional explained when the world No 2 would end his career. The 36-year-old is currently the only active member of the Big Three, with Roger Federer retired and Rafael Nadal sidelined with an injury. And Radmilo Armenulic believes Djokovic could be on the tour for another year or two before hanging up his racket.

Djokovic looks in the prime of his career at the age of 36, winning two of the three Grand Slam tournaments so far this season. The world No 2 is showing no signs of slowing down at the biggest events, though he has been prioritising his schedule and skipping some of the smaller tournaments.

Meanwhile, some of his rivals are beginning to enter their retirement with Federer ending his career at the Laver Cup last September. Nadal has also announced that 2024 will likely be his final year on tour as he continues to struggle with a psoas injury he picked up at the Australian Open. 

Former tennis player and coach Armenulic has now given his verdict on when Djokovic will retire, explaining that his career will likely rest on one condition – whether he’s still able to get to the ball and beat the young stars. “It’s hard to end a career, I know,” the Serb told Informer.rs.

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“I hope he will feel for himself when he should end his career. Nadal is sure to finish because he has a problem with his hips, Federer is already retired, so only Novak remains from the three.”

Once a mentor to Goran Ivanisevic, Armenulic claimed that Djokovic could already be thinking about retirement but tipped him to play for the next two years. He continued: “He must be thinking now that he should finish, but I think he will play for another year or two.

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“He will judge for himself when he sees that he lacks 10 or 15 centimetres to reach the ball, that he no longer has the necessary shot moment… He will decide for himself and say, ‘I’ve played enough, I don’t want to be chased around the field by kids and lose matches that I would normally win’ and make decisions.”

While Armenulic believes retirement has already crossed Djokovic’s mind, the 23-time Grand Slam champion will be firmly focused on his tennis in the coming weeks. The world No 2 is playing in the Cincinnati Open, his first tournament since losing in the Wimbledon final. And he will be going for his 24th Major title at the upcoming US Open.

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