Djokovic conqueror lifts lid on becoming a ‘nobody’ after heroic run

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Alejandro Davidovich Fokina has claimed that he quickly became a “nobody” after his heroic run to the Monte Carlo Masters final last year, where he upset Novak Djokovic before making it all the way to the championship match. The world No 32 has struggled to back up the result since and explained that it was part of the tough nature of tennis.

Davidovich Fokina earned one of the best wins of his career last year when he upset world No 1 Djokovic in the second round of the Monte Carlo Masters 6-3 6-7(5) 6-1. It came when the Serb was playing just his second tournament of the year after having the start of his season derailed when he was deported from Australia.

The 23-year-old proved the victory wasn’t a fluke as he went on to down the likes of 10th seed Taylor Fritz and former world No 3 Grigor Dimitrov on the way to the biggest final of his young career, where he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas. But Davidovich Fokina has been unable to back the result up since, losing in the first round of the French Open a few weeks later despite making the last eight in 2021.

And he has now opened up on the feeling of going back to being a “nobody” after the best week of his career, as he also got injured in the fourth round of the US Open and played just one more match for the rest of the 2022 season. “They are fears in the head,” he told Marca, discussing his disappointing results since Monte Carlo.

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“You see yourself up there and in the end you are nobody for making a final. Life goes on and you are racing the following week. Tennis is a sport in which nothing is forgiven.” The Spaniard also went on to reference his run at the 2021 French Open as he admitted he thought he paid the price for some of his sudden bg results.

“You can neither grow nor go down because you have to stay at the same level and I think I paid for it,” Davidovich Fokina added. “Being my first final in a very positive week, I paid for that extra confidence and I’ve been paying for it for most of the year. Between the Roland Garros quarterfinals and the Monte Carlo final, I’ve learned a lot.”

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Explaining his injury woes from the end of last year, he continued: “With Berretttini, in the fifth set of the US Open, I sprained my second degree knee ligament. I was unable to play for a month and I had two 500 tournaments ahead of me, a 250 and a 1,000. There were players fighting for the Masters or for being very high. I was coming from an injury and getting to that level was difficult for me.”

But things were looking up for the 23-year-old who had managed to start the season feeling good after getting injured at the US Open. “I think we have started the year better than any other. Both physically and tennis-wise I come quite prepared,” he added.

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