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Novak Djokovic warns younger generation he is still there to ‘kick their butt’

Djokovic, 35, still very much wants to win.

Novak Djokovic underlined that he respects every single player but also warned the younger generation that he will try to “kick their butt” for as long as he can. Djokovic, 35, is still a dominant figure in the tennis world even though he has missed several big tournaments this year.

Because Djokovic wasn’t allowed to compete in two Grand Slam and four Masters events, he plummeted to No 7 as Carlos Alcaraz is now the top-ranked player in the world. In an interview with Eurosport, Djokovic showed his respect for the younger generation but underlined that he is still playing because he wants more success.

“First of all, I have to say that I have a very good relationship with all of them. I have tremendous respect for every single tennis player, particularly the ones that are reaching the biggest heights in the tennis world because I understand how that feels and what is necessary to do in order to achieve those things.

It takes a lot of commitment, dedication and hard work so I respect all of these guys. I think it is very good for tennis that we have young guys like Alcaraz – No. 1 in the world, leading the way and winning a Grand Slam this year – Rune, who is coming up, and of course, Sinner.

Also a bit older guys like [Stefanos] Tsitsipas, [Daniil] Medvedev, [Andrey] Rublev, and [Alexander] Zverev – these guys that have already been established in the top five, top 10 in the world, and Grand Slam winners as well,” Djokovic told Eurosport.

Djokovic warns the younger generation he still very much wants to win

Alcaraz, 19, has won a Grand Slam and two Masters this year. Djokovic acknowledged Alcaraz looks like someone who is ready to dominate for a long time, but he is there to make sure the Spaniard doesn’t win that much.

“As difficult as it looks for all of these records that we have made to be broken, I think it is always possible. Alcaraz definitely looks like somebody who has the intention to dominate the game in the years to come.

So I think it is good that there are some new faces, but I will not give up. I will make sure I kick their butt for as long as I possibly can! They will kick my butt sometimes maybe, but hopefully, less than I kick theirs,” Djokovic added.

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