Sport | Tennis

Djokovic eyeing Abu Dhabi defence

World Tour Finals champion wants to begin new season on positive note

  • Staff Report
  • Published: 18:27 November 14, 2012
  • Gulf News

Novak Djokovic
  • Image Credit: Ahmed Kutty/Gulf News
  • Novak Djokovic

Abu Dhabi: ATP World Tour Finals champion Novak Djokovic is already focused on retaining his Mubadala World Tennis Championship title when he begins his 2013 season in Abu Dhabi next month.

The Serb, who will end the year as world No 1, rounded off another hugely successful campaign with victory over Roger Federer in the final of the season-ending event in London on Monday.

He will now take a break before tackling his next major event at the Abu Dhabi International Tennis Complex at Zayed Sports City from December 27 to 29.

Speaking after his ATP finals victory, Djokovic said: “It’s great to end the year back at number one in the world and to get my first ATP World Tour Finals win in London but, after a few weeks’ rest, I’m looking forward to getting the new season off to a winning start again in Abu Dhabi.

“Winning last year’s Mubadala World Tennis Championship was the perfect preparation for my victory at the Australian Open in January.”

Six of the world’s top ten and five of the eight ATP World Tour finalists will compete in Abu Dhabi, with defending champion Djokovic joined by US Open and Olympic champion Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal, David Ferrer and Tomas Berdych, alongside a debut appearance from Janko Tipsarevic.

The Mubadala World Tennis Championship has established itself as the ideal tournament for the world’s top players to start their season and Djokovic, who beat Ferrer in last year’s final, added: “Winning in Abu Dhabi last year was tough, though, and with David back this year, alongside Andy Murray, this promises to be another great tournament.

“I have some very good memories on and off the court from my debut last year. Everything about the place will help me for the season ahead, from the weather and facilities to the crowd. Abu Dhabi is a place that loves tennis. You can just feel the excitement and energy of the fans and the young kids taking up the game for the first time.”

Tickets are available at www.thinkflash.ae or from 800 (Flash) 35274.

John Lickrish, of organisers Flash entertainment, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for UAE tennis fans to see just how close and exciting the competition is between the best players in the world. We have the current stars of the game, with the world number one Novak Djokovic in Abu Dhabi alongside the likes of Andy Murray, Tomas Berdych and David Ferrer, so fans can expect something very special this year.”

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