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Novak Djokovic doing some strength training exercises during a practice session ahead of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships at the Dubai Stadium on Sunday. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Dubai: Novak Djokovic is known for his meticulous planning to achieve his season's goals, be it the Grand Slam titles or the World No 1 ranking. But his current no-vaccination status doesn’t give him the liberty to pick and choose the tournaments he wants to play and is willing to grab any opportunity that comes his way.

“I just have to follow the rules. Whatever tournament that I’m able to play, I’ll be trying to get to that country and play the tournament,” Djokovic said during an interaction with the media in Dubai on the eve of the 30th Dubai Duty Free ATP Tour Tennis Championships, which begins on Monday.

“Right now the situation is obviously different for me. I really can’t choose right now. Wherever I have an opportunity, I’ll be using probably that opportunity and going to play, it’s what I love to do still.”

As much as he is looking forward to get back to the courts, Djokovic, who is the top seed here, is also happy with the positive atmosphere in the locker room in Dubai.

“I haven’t seen too many players, but most of the players that I’ve seen have been positive and welcoming. It’s nice to see obviously. I can’t say that was the case in Australia, it was a little bit strange,” the Serbian world No 1 added.

Tennis forever in life

After all the trials and the tribulations that the genial champion has gone through over the last month, did it ever cross in his mind on life after tennis?

Responding to Gulf News query, Djokovic said he will always be involved with tennis and aims to pay back the game for the rest of his life. And that is to create more champions at his tennis school in Belgrade, Serbia.

“I see tennis in my life forever. My tennis centre has 150 children. I’m trying to transfer and share as much of the knowledge and experience that I have to the younger generations and, hopefully, build more champions,” he said with a glee in his eyes.

“It gives me a great joy to see a young tennis player asking for advice and me being able to mentor someone on the court. It’s something that deeply fulfils me and that’s something that makes me happy. I’m enjoying that process.”