Novak Djokovic says he is ready to move on after a “mentally and emotionally difficult” start to the year

Djokovic aware of missing major tournaments 0:52 (CNN) — World No. 1 Novak Djokovic said he is ready to put a difficult start to the year behind him as he prepares to kick off his clay-court season at the Masters of Monte Carlo this week. Djokovic will play his second tournament of the year in Monte Carlo and the first since he reached the quarterfinals of the Dubai Tennis Championships in February. This happened after he was expelled from Australia before the Open of that country for having entered without being vaccinated against covid-19. “The last four or five months have been a real challenge for me mentally and emotionally, but here I am. I try to put all that behind me and move on,” Djokovic told reporters on Sunday. The 34-year-old will face World No. 46 Alejandro Davidovich Fokina on Tuesday as he prepares to defend the French Open next month. Injury halts Nadal’s breakthrough 0:41In February, Djokovic lost his World No. 1 spot to Daniil Medvedev, but the 20-time Grand Slam champion returned to the top of the rankings three weeks later after defeating Medvedev in the second round against Gael Monfils in Indian Wells. “You have to deal with everything that has probably been dormant inside you and maybe it’s waiting to come out,” Djokovic said reflecting on the Australian Open debacle. “I try to deal with it on a daily or weekly basis, whatever. If something comes out, I acknowledge it, but I move on,” he said. “It’s not something that bothers me on a daily basis, so I don’t feel like it’s left me with any big scars that prevent me from training or participating in tournaments or living my life, far from it… But it’s definitely been a very challenging few months and something that I’ve never experienced before. So I’ll try to use that as fuel for what’s to come,” “Nole” added. In Monaco, a place he has called home for the past 10 years, Djokovic faces the prospect of a quarter-final match against 18-year-old Carlos Alcaraz, who recently became the youngest men’s Open champion. Miami in the history of the tournament. Also competing in Monte Carlo this week are world number 3 Alexander Zverev and world number 5 and defending champion Stefanos Tsitsipas.

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