At the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic built a stature as iconic as that of Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros and Roger Federer at Wimbledon, believes tennis commentator and journalist Nick McCarvel. The Serb is the clear favorite to win his 10th Australian Open title when he returns to the Melbourne Major in 2023, he says.
Djokovic received good news last week as his Australian visa ban is set to be overturned by the government, allowing him to play in the first Grand Slam of 2023. McCarvel highlighted how the world No. was happy to hear the news as he always has. feels confident in Melbourne and can’t wait to make up for the missed opportunity this year.
Speaking on a recent episode of ‘Courtside: The US Open Podcast,’ the American commentator spoke about Djokovic’s legacy at the Australian Open, a tournament he believes the 35-year-old ” possesses”.
“In plain tennis terms, he owns this tournament,” Nick McCarvel said. “You put him in the stature of Rafa at Roland Garros and Roger, maybe 10 years ago, as he owned Wimbledon.”
He elaborated on the same and said that everything about the conditions at the Australian Open favors Djokovic and makes him very difficult to defeat.
“9 times champion, the surface, the conditions, he often plays at night when the ball is moving a bit slower and that helps him become a blue wall. I was watching his interview with Prakash Amritraj on Tennis Channel and he was just delighted with this decision because, in plain tennis terms, it means he can return to a place where he did so well,” added McCarvel.
The former world No. 1 has missed many tournaments in 2022 and is relatively fresher than his competitors, which will be a “blessing in disguise” for him ahead of the Australian Open, McCarvel believes. That, coupled with his record there and the natural conditions, will help his cause come the 2023 edition, according to McCarvel, who also praised Djokovic for maintaining an excellent level of fitness.
“He’s been very fresh and he hasn’t played as much tennis as a lot of the top guys because he wasn’t allowed to come into the United States…I think that’s only going to help him come in Australia when he’s even Now Novak, at 35, he’s still that guy who kept himself in such good physical shape,” the American said.
“Novak Djokovic is the favorite to win the 2023 Australian Open despite Rafael Nadal being the defending champion” – Nick McCarvel
Nick McCarvel, who is often seen during the broadcasts and commentaries of most major tennis tournaments, thinks everything has gone well for Novak Djokovic ahead of the Australian Open 2023.
Although the Serb’s biggest rival, Rafael Nadal, will enter the tournament as the defending champion, the nine-time champion will be “the man to beat”, believes McCarvel.
“Now that he can play in Melbourne and he’s fresh, he’s not tired, he’ll have a certain off-season, it’ll be Novak against the rest of the pitch, it just can’t be with his Even with Rafa as the defending champion, it’s absolutely Novak’s tournament,” said McCarvel.
Djokovic hasn’t lost a match at the Australian Open since his fourth-round loss to Hyeon Chung in the 2018 edition. He won three consecutive titles thereafter from 2019-21 and is on a streak of 21 wins at the Australian Open. Overall, he has an 82-8 win-loss record in the tournament, and his 91% win-loss record is his personal best among the four Grand Slam tournaments.