Novak Djokovic has paid tribute to Andy Murray, hailing the Brit as a ‘great champion and friend’ following his decision to quit tennis.
Murray announced on Friday that he plans to retire after Wimbledon this year – a decision in part prompted by a humbling practice match defeat to current world number one Djokovic.
However, Djokovic has expressed surprised at Murray’s decision, although he has also empathised with it.
“It’s quite a shock for me honestly because we are the same age, the same generation,” Djokovic said at an event in Melbourne.
“It’s quite sad to see him going through what he has been going through. As someone who has been through a major injury with my elbow in the last couple of years, I can definitely empathise with him and relate to what he’s going through.
“I trained with him a couple of days ago and we got to chatting a little bit. He’s a great champion, he’s a friend of mine that I grew up with.
“It’s kind of sad to know that he might play his last Australian Open but I do wish him all the best. There’s a lot of things in life I’m sure to be grateful for.”
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