Novak Djokovic’s father injured in fall as tennis great rushes to Belgrade and alters Italian Open plans

Shahida Jacobs
Novak Djokovic Indian Wells 2024
Novak Djokovic at a press conference in Indian Wells

Novak Djokovic’s father, Srdjan, is set to undergo surgery after suffering serious injuries during a fall in Belgrade on Sunday.

World No 1 Djokovic has flown to the city of his birth to be by his father’s side after it was confirmed that Srdjan was admitted to the Emergency Centre in Belgrade after sustaining injuries to his upper arm and shoulder.

According to Sport Klub, the 63-year-old broke his humerus when he fell from a chair while feeding birds at his home with the injuries requiring surgery.

Tennis great Novak – who resides in Monaco – his brother Marko and uncle Goran visited Srdjan in hospital later in the day.

The 24-time Grand Slam winner was due to fly to Rome in the coming days with the Italian Open getting underway next week, but he has been forced to tweak his travelling plans.

It remains to be seen how long his father will stay in hospital and whether or not Djokovic will make changes to his playing schedule.

Srdjan Djokovic, father of Novak Djokovic, at a press conference

Djokovic has played only 15 matches so far this year as he opted to skip the Middle East swing, the Miami Open and this week’s Madrid Open.

The 36-year-old has made it clear that the Paris Olympics, which will take place at Roland Garros in July-August, the French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open are his main priorities this year.

However, he has indicated that he will play at the Italian Open as it is a key warm-up event for the French Open.

Following his poor start to the 2024 season, there had been talk that Djokovic has lost motivation with many believing he could decide to retire in the next year or so.

READ MORE: Goran Ivanisevic makes Novak Djokovic motivation confession

Srdjan himself expressed a big wish last year that his son would retire.

“As far as my wishes for him go, he has already fulfilled them all seven/eight years ago. The rest is this amazing bonus,” he told Sportal’s NOVAK Untold stories documentary.

“Tennis is only one segment of his life, not his whole life. I expect him to be recognised for the things he will do after his career ends as well, after he leaves the tennis world, which I hope it will happen next year. And for Novak to slowly but surely… it’s not the end, but in a year-and-a-half let’s say.

“My wish as a father – I think for some time that he should have stopped working this extremely difficult job. It’s physically and mentally challenging and very demanding – with him being fully dedicated for 30 years, and not taking his foot off the gas, there is not much time for other things in life.”