Fed has the backhand, Rafa has the serve, Djoker?

As Fed aged, he tweaked and improved part of his game. The backhand. Without it he probably never wins another slam.

Rafa has improved his serve with age, and it looks to be improving every tourney. Probably earned him 2 so far and probably more.

Without these, they would age much quicker than what we are seeing.

With djoker coming into this point in age, what will he tweak to try and stay on top?

Nothing? Serve? Net game?
 

Third Serve

Legend
I don't see a shot that he could improve in order to keep up with the rest of the tour. I'd say he should focus on being more aggressive overall, which he's done a good job of so far.

You could say he needs to improve his net game, but it's not a crucial part of his overall playing style so it isn't required.
 

MeatTornado

Legend
Novak's already on top of the world and practically unbeatable at his best.

Why would he need to change anything if it's all working? Roger & Rafa made their adjustments to keep up. Whose pace is Novak trying to match? There's no one coming for him.
 
Novak's already on top of the world and practically unbeatable at his best.

Why would he need to change anything if it's all working? Roger & Rafa made their adjustments to keep up. Whose pace is Novak trying to match? There's no one coming for him.
He is just 32, apparently not old anymore according to people here. As he ages he will need to innovate something. Then again maybe not if he can maintain his defense.
 

RaulRamirez

Hall of Fame
It's a good question.
At some point, he will lose some of his court coverage skills, so he may very well need to improve in other areas.

I doubt that his serve will improve additionally, so that leaves his net game. His touch is already pretty good at the net, but his instincts on when to approach can improve... but can he improve those instincts at this point?
 

MeatTornado

Legend
He is just 32, apparently not old anymore according to people here. As he ages he will need to innovate something. Then again maybe not if he can maintain his defense.
I never could've imagined that he'd still move this well and be the best defender on tour at 32 in the first place. So I'm not assuming he'll lose his defense any time soon.

His serve, RoS, forehand and backhand are already amazing. Idk what else he should work on. I don't think his slice is very good, but he doesn't really need it when his topspin backhand is so great. I guess he could go the Fed route of re-inventing his net game, but that kinda goes against his entire gameplan. Drop shots and overheads could be better, but they're not major components to anyone's game anyway.
 

Milehigh5280

Semi-Pro
I think the key for him, and really any aging player, is the serve. I haven't looked at the numbers, but it seems like for every dominant run Djokovic had he was serving at his best. For example, it's why he won the Wimbledon semifinal against Nadal.
 
Djokovic has already greatly improved his serve, even more than Nadal has improved his. Almost all his serving stats beat Federer at Wimbledon.
 
I never could've imagined that he'd still move this well and be the best defender on tour at 32 in the first place. So I'm not assuming he'll lose his defense any time soon.

His serve, RoS, forehand and backhand are already amazing. Idk what else he should work on. I don't think his slice is very good, but he doesn't really need it when his topspin backhand is so great. I guess he could go the Fed route of re-inventing his net game, but that kinda goes against his entire gameplan. Drop shots and overheads could be better, but they're not major components to anyone's game anyway.
Yes, but he will slow down, he will have weaker defense, and he will need to compensate for it. Maybe it will be 3 years from now, but you start around now. Fed took a year or two to figure it out. Same with rafa.

If he wants to prolong it, I do think he could up his net game and use it to end points quicker.
 

MeatTornado

Legend
Yes, but he will slow down, he will have weaker defense, and he will need to compensate for it. Maybe it will be 3 years from now, but you start around now. Fed took a year or two to figure it out. Same with rafa.

If he wants to prolong it, I do think he could up his net game and use it to end points quicker.
If he was smart he'd start now. But my point is that he won't because there's no impetus.

When Roger re-tooled his game it came after his miserable 2013 season when everything was going wrong for him and he finally admitted he needed a change to keep up. And he worked harder and harder at his Fedberg game to overcome Djokovic in particular, who was standing in his way at every turn.

Novak's not chasing anything. So the motivation isn't the same and he might not adapt until it's too late.
 

TripleATeam

Legend
Well, as others have pointed out, Novak has already improved his serve quite a bit. His overhead is nowhere near the liability it used to be.

I would say tactics. He needs to see openings more. Currently he just returns the ball aggressively. This slows the opponent and Novak keeps working away at that opening until it becomes a high-percentage shot, then strikes. What Novak needs to do is create that opening more. Be more aggressive in shot selection and break through the opponent, or else they'll break through him.
 

blablavla

Hall of Fame
Yes, but he will slow down, he will have weaker defense, and he will need to compensate for it. Maybe it will be 3 years from now, but you start around now. Fed took a year or two to figure it out. Same with rafa.

If he wants to prolong it, I do think he could up his net game and use it to end points quicker.
and he is the guy to beat for anyone dreaming to become the next #1
as history shows, it's just a matter of time.
 

Bhagi Katbamna

Hall of Fame
I always felt that Novak's biggest weapon is his movement. That's usually the first thing that goes as a player gets older. If he learned to play the net a little better, he wouldn't need to just defend.
 

Imperator

Hall of Fame
His serve is much better than Nadal's and he has the best backhand on tour.

I guess he could improve his net game. His overhead is atrocious but it's been like this for years so I'm not sure he could do something about it. I think the most important aspect he should work on is psychological : he should accept he can't control everything and just deal with it. That's something he wasn't able to do at RG, for example. If things don't go his way, he crumbles. That's what gonna happen with his body, it will let him down a little bit and he can't let that disturb him if he wants to stay at the top. Adapt or die.
 

victorcruz

Hall of Fame
Nobody should worry about Djokovic going forward. He is a goat and he will figure it out, health is the only concern for him.
 

Djokodal Fan

Hall of Fame
He should definitely need to improve his net and volleying skills to be relevant as he ages. He cannot grind every match against young players such as Medvedev or thiem kachanov . He won't have any gas left in the tank for later stages of slams. He should hire Becker or edberg or jmac for volley tuition sessions.that will do him a world of good for next 3 years
 
After the match against Schwartzman it's kinda funny to read about Nadal improving his serve. In this match alone (even in 2 sets of it) he dropped his serve as many times as he did during the whole USO 2013 tournament, and just 1 time less than during USO 2010.
 

kevaninho

Hall of Fame
The thread is about what each have improved as they age.
Not about who has the best backhand or serve
:rolleyes:
 

Start da Game

Hall of Fame
As Fed aged, he tweaked and improved part of his game. The backhand. Without it he probably never wins another slam.

Rafa has improved his serve with age, and it looks to be improving every tourney. Probably earned him 2 so far and probably more.

Without these, they would age much quicker than what we are seeing.

With djoker coming into this point in age, what will he tweak to try and stay on top?

Nothing? Serve? Net game?
rafa hasn’t improved anything over the last 5 years, if anything his game has actually declined.......
 
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