“This is not bad for Novak. This is bad for tennis,” Obradovic, also credited with the development of players like Boris Pasansky, Viktor Troicki, Nenad Zimonjic and Janko Tipsarevic, told TOI from Belgrade, Serbia.
“Novak is not just the best tennis player. He is the best athlete across all sports in the last five-six years.” And that, Obdravovic said, was something the established world order couldn’t accept.
“You think of Mohammad Ali, Pele, or even John Lennon. These are the people who actually represented the real world,” he mentioned as examples. To get his message across to the Indian fans, he cited Mahatma Gandhi’s fight against the “stupid England”.
So, what happens to Djokovic’s Grand Slam pursuit from here on? Will he be able to play them in the future without facing such obstacles?
“They will try to do the same thing, the same tactic. It is the only way they can stop him from getting the Grand Slam record,” Obradovic said. “They are trying to destroy Djokovic, but they cannot.”
The 54-year-old said the only way Djokovic could respond now was organising his own world tour. And the BRIC countries could provide a strong counterpoint to the Commonwealth, he said.
“Novak is very powerful in his mind. Together with countries like India, Russia, China and Brazil, he can create a new ATP and new tournaments in Mumbai, Shanghai, etc,” Obradovic said.
“In 1973, they changed the sport by launching the ATP. Djokovic has to launch a new ATP. The players are with him. If big economies like China and India, Russia and Brazil come together and join him, he can bring about a change.”