Novak Djokovic retirement statement sets tongues wagging

Following victory over Casper Ruud in his opening match at the ATP Finals, rumours were abound that Novak Djokovic had laid out his retirement plans.

After receiving his trophy for clinching the Year End Number One spot for a record seventh time, the Serb stated in Italian: ‘I hope to play this great sport for two more years.’

Social media was buzzing with people wondering if he has indeed decided to hang up his racket around the age of 36 – young by the standards Roger Federer has set.

The locker room was probably ready to celebrate – the quicker Djokovic retires, the sooner they can get their hands on the most coveted titles.

Some people, however, noted that that the word ‘paio’ in Italian can be used to mean ‘two’ but is often used to mean ‘a few’.

It seems unlikely, if you have been following Djokovic’s career, that he would retire before another stab at a much-desired Olympics Gold Medal. The next opportunity will be in 2024 in Paris.

Thankfully, the retirement question was posed to Djokovic in his post-match presser. He laughed: ‘Haha, no, no, I didn’t mean it that way. I said COUPLE in Italian. I don’t have a number and I don’t want to impose a limit on myself. There is no reason for me to think about leaving tennis.’

Great news for tennis fans, not so great for the players on the ATP Tour it seems…

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