LONDON - Novak Djokovic has abandoned his win-at-all-costs attitude, the three-time Wimbledon champion insisting he now has other priorities. It is a far cry from the Djokovic of 2011, when the Serb said he felt like an "animal" after his first SW19 title.
"I used to base all my happiness on winning a tennis match," said second seed Djokovic. "I think many athletes today are doing that. I try not to do that any more.
"Of course I would love to win every match I play in, but I don’t take that as every essential moment in my life which determines my happiness. But it’s not like that. Some other things were suffering during that time. It’s figuring out the right balance to be completely in peace and satisfied with yourself."
After ropey results, including a straight-sets defeat by Dominic Thiem at the French Open, Djokovic opted to take a wildcard for Eastbourne. The 30-year-old was the only top-15-ranked player and won the tournament without dropping a set. He feels it was ideal preparation for Wimbledon, where he faces Martin Klizan in the first round.
"It seems to me that, especially nowadays, everything is observed through the lens of material success," Djokovic said. "For me, it’s more important to take care of myself as a human being."