Rome Masters finalist Novak Djokovic will grant himself some downtime next week after losing 7-5, 1-6, 6-3 in the Foro Italico final on Sunday to Rafael Nadal.
But the world No. 1 will then face a calendar crunch of his own making with a commitment to play in his family-run Belgrade ATP event which only ends the day prior to the May 30 start of the French Open.
The Serb can hardly let his relatives down so in all likelihood must front up for the home-grown outing; under normal, non-COVID circumstances, top players ideally spend the week before a Grand Slam on site at the major getting used to the courts.
But Djokovic is prepared to live dangerously.
“This coming week I’m going to rest as much as I can, I’ve had enough (time) with the racquet on the court,” he said.
“I’ll rejuvenate, regroup, and then start training again some days before the start of the Belgrade Open (May 22).
“I’m hoping I can go all the way there, playing at home, most likely we are going to see the crowd in the stands, so it’s fantastic to feed off that energy.
“I will go to Paris with good feelings on the court, off the court. I can spend some time with the family which I wouldn’t get if I go earlier to Paris.”
Djokovic said his main goal is to carry forward with his clay momentum gained this week.
“I think I’m on the right way. The last couple of days really gave me the confidence boost for the clay – I found my game.
“Now I just have to maintain this level and peak in Paris.”
Main photo:- Novak Djokovic taking Rafa Nadal to three sets in Rome Final – by ATPTour.com