Cape Town - Novak Djokovic believes that Andy Murray's wife deserves much credit for the Scot's recent success on the tennis court.
Murray ended Djokovic's three year reign at the top of the tennis
world this month and put an exclamation point on a brilliant season with
a win over the Serb in the ATP World Tour Finals two weeks ago.
Murray's wife, Kim Sears, gave birth this year and has endured
motherhood and plenty of travel to support Murray this year, something
that Djokovic understands is difficult.
"She has to get some credit," the 29-year-old told tennis.com.
"She gave birth this year. He has traveled all over the place. I know
how it is with my wife, Jelena, what she had to go through as a mother
back home with a little baby. So Kim: Well done. She's maybe made even a
bigger effort than Andy."
The 12-time grand slam winner added that despite the long-time
rivalry with Murray, they remain closer friends than many would think.
"We chatted at length this year quite a lot because, obviously, I became a father the first time," he continued.
"We spoke about the difficulty in keeping the sort of balance in your
life, with the family and the traveling and the work and everything.
It's not always easy when you're playing on court in the biggest matches
with a lot at stake, but we've always got on well.
"I think both of us have been with our now-wives a long time, pretty
much since we were like 18, 19 years old. We met each other's wives
together at that age, as well. We've known each other a very long time.
Regardless of what some of you may think, we have a good relationship."
The Murray/Djokovic rivalry will continue at the Australian Open in
January, where they will likely be the top two seeds, with Djokovic
seeking an unprecedented sixth consecutive win in Melbourne.