Toronto (Canada) : Newlywed Novak Djokovic will try to give himself more reason to celebrate this week as he returns to the hardcourts of North America at the ATP Masters at Toronto with the US Open on the horizon.
The number one-ranked Serb, who has lifted the trophy three times in the tournament that alternates between Toronto and Montreal, is seeking another strong run to further separate himself atop the rankings from injured world number two Rafael Nadal.
[alert type=”e.g. warning, danger, success, info” title=””]I’m going back to the business, back to my office, but of course filled with positive energy, with joy, all the beautiful emotions that a person can experience right now. Hopefully I can use that to perform well on the tennis court. Novak Djokovic, World No.1 men’s tennis player[/alert]
The Spaniard, who won the 2013 Canadian crown as well as the Cincinnati Masters, has withdrawn from both events this year to nurse a right wrist injury — raising fears he could also miss the final Grand Slam of the season at Flushing Meadows, where he is also the defending champion.
His absence leaves Djokovic as the favorite in Toronto, and despite a “terrible draw” that could have him meeting eighth-seeded Andy Murray in the quarter-finals the 27-year-old was in high spirits after winning Wimbledon and getting married, with his first child to be born soon.
“It’s been probably the best month I’ve had in my life with the Wimbledon title, a wedding and of course a baby coming up,” Djokovic said.
“I’m going back to the business, back to my office, but of course filled with positive energy, with joy, all the beautiful emotions that a person can experience right now. Hopefully I can use that to perform well on the tennis court.”
Roger Federer, who won Canada in 2004 and 2006, is seeded second in his quest for a third title of 2014.
He’ll be returning to action for the first time since falling to Djokovic in a five-set final at Wimbledon.
Federer is followed in the seedings by compatriot Stan Wawrinka, the Australian Open and Monte Carlo champion. Acknowledging that his breakthrough season has taken something of a toll, Wawrinka skipped a date last month as headliner on his home claycourts at Gstaad, saying he needed both a mental and physical break.
“I need to be ready for the last few months of the season. It’s a long series and it will be tough for sure,” he said. “It will be another big challenge,” added Wawrinka. “I’m trying to be fit and to do everything possible not to be injured.” —AFP