I’ll enjoy playing against Novak

Thu 20 Apr 2023

Dusan Lajovic has advanced into the quarter-finals of the Srpska Open by beating Frenchman Grégoire
Barrère 6-3, 6-0 in the second round.
Lajovic, ranked No 70, will now face world No. 1 Novak Djokovic, on Friday.
“Tennis balls are still heavy but you call tell the difference and the tennis court is much better. I’m happy
that the sun has come out; it’s a good thing both for tennis fans and players”, Lajovic underlined.
The match between Lajovic and Barrère lasted only 1 hour and 4 minutes and the Serb played an
incredible second set with a streak of 24 consecutive points won.
"I haven’t seen the statistics. I don’t know if it happened to me before. I believe it’s the first time. I
managed to find my game in the second set, to do as I planned. When he realised he couldn’t find the
right solution, he tried to go all out, missed many shots so that would be part of the statistics too”.
Lajovic also discussed how he prepares for every point, i.e. a match. Unlike other players, the Serbian
tennis player gets into the point quickly.
"To be honest, it’s a rhythm that doesn’t affect me much if, for example, I move faster and my opponent
needs more time. I wasn’t paying attention to that so far and it’s not a distraction. I don’t think it plays a
very important role, you get used to that as you gain experience. It happens that a player complains of
an opponent, when the opponent is taking too much time before the serve and doesn’t respect your
rhythm but then the umpire is there to reprimand the player in the question”.
Spectators were rooting for Novak Djokovic unconditionally in the last couple of days. In the match
between two Serbian champions, the world No. 1 will again have the advantage but Lajovic hopes to
have the support from the stands too.
"So far, the audience acted in the spirit of fair play. Yet, I haven’t played against Novak. I’m aware that
he will have more spectators on his side, and it’s something to be expected. On the other hand, that’s
nothing new. I hope to enjoy my time on the tennis court and the atmosphere. I’m glad to see many of
our players in the final stages of the tournament because local people love to watch and support us. I
hope that won’t change until the end of the tournament.”
Lajovic is getting into better shape every day and he’s becoming more confident on the tennis court,
even when he’s playing against an admirable opponent such as Alcaraz he played against on several
occasions this season.
"The fact that I’ve been playing very good tennis lately affects my confidence, the same as every win.
The thing with confidence is a tricky thing because it’s very difficult to build confidence and it’s easily
lost. I have to embrace every moment and be aware of every moment because it gets out of control in
no time. Matches against Alcaraz were quite challenging, maybe a signal that I have the quality but I
have to maintain good tennis over a longer period of time. He is where he is for a reason and plays his
best tennis when he needs it the most. On the other hand, I didn’t start the match today in the best
possible way but I did manage to control some important situations. And that’s what affects the
confidence the most; that you can keep your cool in certain situations of key importance in one match”.