Few rivalries in tennis history can match the one between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal as they both try to reach the pinnacle of the sport. But that didn't stop Djokovic from giving Nadal his props today.
Taking to Twitter, Djokovic congratulated Nadal on winning the Australian Open for his 21st Grand Slam this weekend. He praised Nadal for his "fighting spirit" and also complimented his Finals opponent Daniil Medvedev for giving him a tough match.
"Congratulations to [Rafael Nadal] for 21st GS. Amazing achievement. Always impressive fighting spirit that prevailed another time. Enhorabuena," he wrote, adding some emojis. "[Daniil Medvedev] gave it his all out there and played with the passion and determination we have come to expect from him."
Nadal's win at the Australian Open broke the three-way tie between him, Djokovic and Roger Federer for the most in tennis history. It was Nadal's second-ever win in Australia, trailing far behind Djokovic's nine.
Novak Djokovic was unable to compete in the Australian Open after being deported over a vaccination issue. Unfortunately, his status for the other three Grand Slam tournaments looks murky as well.
Barring changes to rules and laws over the next few months, Djokovic will most likely be unable to attend The French Open or Wimbledon for the same reasons. Entering the United States for the U.S. Open may also be an issue.
Djokovic has not missed more than one Grand Slam tournament in a season since 2005. But 2022 could be the year that he misses all of them if things don't change.
Will we see Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal face off in any tournament this year?