Justine Henin gives brutal critique of Novak Djokovic's current form

Djokovic has not won a tournament so far in 2024.
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Novak Djokovic finished 2023 after losing the Wimbledon final to Carlos Alcaraz by winning every other event he entered. But it may say a lot about the expectations for Djokovic that simply losing two matches to Jannik Sinner - one at the ATP Finals and one at the Davis Cup - appeared to show cracks in the Serb's form. Not only that but because Djokovic was almost always perfect, a crack might imply his career is almost over.

That seems ludicrous, right? Just because some player does not win every match they ever play does not mean they are suddenly declining. Of course, Djokovic is not just "some player." He is arguably the greatest player ever and he has the statistics to back that up. But age does catch up to everyone, so Djokovic slowing down makes sense.

Still, he has not only not won a tournament in 2024, he has not even reached a final. Plus, he was bounced out of the Indian Wells Masters before reaching the quarterfinals by qualifier Luca Nardi. If there was a sign of decline, that was it. Djokovic also simply does not seem to be playing with the same confidence as he has in most previous years.

Jstin Henin has a harsh word to describe Novak Djokovic's form

Former WTA No. 1 Justin Henin knows a few things about tennis, of course. That includes the understanding of what it takes to reach No. 1 and try to stay there. She recently spoke to Eurosport about her observations of Djokovic this year, and some of her response was harsh but fair.

Henin said, "It’s always a little surprising, almost disturbing, to see him in this state, but he needs this volume. He has had very little pace since the start of the year and on this surface, (he) will draw a lot more from his reserves, the rallies are longer...He is not at his best level but he is winning matches, gaining confidence. And we saw that this (reaching the semifinals) really gave him a smile again."

A couple of things there. First, the use of the word "disturbing" certainly is not going to make Djokovic fans feel better about the form of their favorite player. One can truly only compare the Serb's current play against his past, though, as there is really no other comparable player. Maybe Djokovic's "disturbing" form is another player's excellent play.

The other part is why would Djokovic suddenly be so low in confidence that simply reaching the semifinals of a tournament helps his mindset. This is a player who is used to reaching finals and winning most of them. Simply winning a few matches seems like it would be even more defeating to him as he is not winning late in events. But Henin would know best, and maybe Djokovic needs a confidence boost.

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