Novak Djokovic’s next tournament confirmed and he could face Rafael Nadal

Kevin Palmer
Novak Djokovic Indian Wells Masters trophy

Novak Djokovic has been spending time relaxing with his family in Spain in recent days, but now his next tournament on the ATP Tour has been confirmed.

The world No 1 suggested he was struggling with a virus during the Australian Open and he turned in an unusually limp performance in his defeat against eventual champion Jannik Sinner in the semi-finals.

His comments in his final press conference in Melbourne left some doubts over whether he would have an extended break from the game, as he confirmed once again that his focus will be on Grand Slam events for the rest of his career.

“I still have high hopes, you know, for other Slams, Olympics, and whatever tournaments that I’ll play,” he said, looking ahead to the rest of 2024.

“It’s just the beginning of the season. It’s not the feeling that I’m used to. I mean, it kind of has been incredibly satisfying for me, you know, to start off most of my seasons with a Grand Slam win and never lost in semis or finals of the Australian Open.

“So this time it’s a bit different, but it is what it is. Let’s see. I don’t know.

“This tournament hasn’t been, as I said, up to my standard or criteria or the level that I would normally play or expect myself to play, but doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the beginning of the end, you know, as some people like to call it.

“It’s not a secret that I want to break more records and make more history of the game and the focus will be on the Slams from now on. That’s something that keeps on motivating me.”

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After achieving the historic number one ranking for the longest weeks at number one, it’s going to be a relief for me because I’m going to focus all my attention on Slams mostly.

“When you are going for number one rankings, you kind of have to be playing the entire season.

“My goals will adapt and will shift a little bit, which means that I will have an opportunity to do that which, as a father and a husband, I’m really looking forward to.”

It sparked question marks over whether he will play at the Indian Wells and Miami Open ‘Sunshine Swing’ tournaments in March, but now it has been confirmed that the 24-time Grand Slam champion will make the trip to America next month.

Indian Wells officials have posted a social media post confirming Djokovic will be part of their draw for the first time since 2019, as he will aim to win his fifth title in the Californian event.

He is likely to also confirm his particiaption in the Miami Open that comes up straight after the Indian Wells tournament, which will give the Serbian a chance to increase his lead at the top of the ATP rankings.

Indian Wells chiefs are also promoting the return of Rafael Nadal to the tournament, as they are hailing his comeback as ‘the return of The King’.

In the women’s draw, Naomi Osaka is one of the headline comeback acts being used to promote the event, with Caroline Wozniacki also part of the promotion ahead of a tournament that gets underway on March 6th.