Novak Djokovic: ‘I will revise my schedule – it rips my heart out to be away from my family’

Novak Djokovic says he will have to ‘revise his schedule’ this year to ensure he gets to spend time with his family.

The past twelve months have been tough for tennis players, as different coronavirus restrictions at different tournaments has meant leaving family behind rather than taking them on Tour as has previously happened.

Players had to quarantine alone for 14 days before the Australian Open even started, with just very limited members of their support team allowed to join them.

That, for Djokovic, who has a young family at home, has proven to be understandably tough, and he says he will put them first this year, even if it means putting his world number one ranking in danger.

“I will have to revise my schedule comparing to the last year or any other season before this,” Novak Djokovic said, as quoted by Tennis Majors.

“I explained my reasons why. Obviously time away from family definitely is something that has an impact on me.

“I’ll have to see with these rules and regulations and restrictions in place all over the world, Europe, not being able to take my family on the road is something that is a big problem for me.”

It was not the first time Djokovic has spoken about how tough he has found it to be away from his family.

“Well, when I’m on the road of course I have to try to use the most of my time on the road and make my absence from the home valuable, try to make a big success as a reason why I’ve travelled so far and for so long without seeing my kids and my wife,” he said after winning the Australian Open.

“Of course, I miss them. I mean, at times it rips my heart apart, to watch my kids.

“Thankfully to technology you can see them on FaceTime and everything. But not being close to them, being separated for a long time [is hard].”

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