Novak Djokovic will be the man to win the Australian Open again with doubles great Todd Woodbridge saying his return to the hard court Grand Slam is the “best case of the tournament”.
Nine-time Melbourne Park champion Djokovic missed out on his title defense earlier in the year after being deported due to unvaccinated Covid-19 status.
His deportation resulted in an automatic three-year visa ban, however He was cleared last week to play in next year’s tournament. After the country’s new immigration minister lifted the ban.
In Djokovic’s absence, Nadal defeated Daniil Medvedev in the final of this year’s Australian Open and the Spaniard will no doubt be keen to successfully defend his title in January next year.
In addition to Djokovic, Nadal and Medvedev will be competing for the US Open title and World No. 1 Alcaraz.
16 men’s Grand Slam champion Woodbridge Djokovic is happy to be back and feels the Serbian will be the favourite.
“I think it’s the best situation for the tournament because we want the best players to play at the Australian Open,” he told Wide World Sports Radio.
“What goes into it? [Australian] Open in terms of the build, the prize money, what it does for our reputation around the world – we want the best to be allowed to come here and play.
“Given the fact that Novak has won nine times, he enters as a heavy favorite after not being allowed to play this year.”
Djokovic won this year’s Wimbledon but did not receive any points after the ATP canceled the tournament due to the ban on players from Russia and Belarus.
The Serbian then missed the North American hard court swing and Alcaraz’s success at Flushing Meadows saw him take over the world No. 1 ranking.
Djokovic finished the year with wins at the Italian Open, Tel Aviv Open, Astana Open and Victory Cup. Season-ending ATP Finals.
But Woodbridge says Djokovic is No. 1 in his eyes.
“In my mind, the level is very skewed this year,” he said.
“He [Djokovic] He is still the world’s number 1 player and it is very important to get him back.
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