Dusan Vemic speaks out about his time working alongside the world No.1.
Dusan Vemic believes ‘everything is in balance’ for the world No.1 ahead of his return to the court later this year. The ATP Tour has been suspended since March 9th due to the Pandemic with officials aiming to restart competition next month at the Western and Southern Open, which has been moved to New York. Earlier this week the Citi Open in Washington, which was set to be the first tournament in the revised calendar, was cancelled.
Djokovic has played some matches during the break with him fronting the controversy-stricken Adria Tour. An event he co-founded that took place in Serbia and Croatia before it was scrapped following an outbreak of COVID-19, which the 17-time Grand Slam champion contracted. Despite the blip, Vemic believes it won’t be long before Djokovic returns to his best on the Tour.
“After everything that happened, he can only be stronger, smarter and better. Whenever the tournaments start, he already has four months of training healthy, he is rested both physically and mentally,” Vemic said during an interview with Sport Klub.
“He spent time with his family, everything is currently in balance. The only thing he doesn’t have, like most tennis players, is too many matches to know what form he is in. But knowing him, he needs a few matches and he will be at his highest level.”
Vemic worked as an assistant coach for Djokovic, officially starting their collaboration back in January 2012. A former top 40 doubles player himself, he has also worked with the likes of Andrea Petkovic, Filip Krajinovic and both of the Bryan brothers.
Looking back on his time with Djokovic, the 44-year-old said he was ‘overjoyed’ to have been part of the team. He is now working with American rising star Brandon Nakashima, who have rocketed up the world rankings from 942 in September 2019 to his current position of 220th. Nakashima reached the quarter-finals of the Delray Beach Open in February.
“The time, moments and tournaments we spent together were wonderful,” he said of his time with Djokovic.
“I was completely focused on doing my best to help him and the Djokovic team to the maximum, but I helped as a friend and colleague even before I started working officially. I was overjoyed to be a part of that team and to feel that I am a part of all that.”
Vermic has also paid tribute to Marian Vajda, who is Djokovic’s current principal coach. The two reunited in April 2018 following a break of just over a year. Each one of Djokovic’s Grand Slam titles have occurred whilst Vajda was a member of his team making the Slovakian one of the most successful coaches at major tournaments in history.
“He is a great person, a fantastic coach with a lot of experience, calm and composed. He is always collected and concentrated on the basics of tennis,” Vemic commented on Vajda.
“Whenever it is difficult, he tries to summarize everything he has to say in a few words. Novak, as we all know, is an athlete and tennis player who is not born every day – he receives everything he is told in the best possible way and immediately optimizes it.”
It is currently unclear as to where Djokovic will play his next tournament when competitive tennis resumes. So far in 2020 he has won three consecutive titles at the ATP Cup, Australian Open and Dubai Tennis Championships.