Ready to displace the Big Three?
Meanwhile, Shapovalov has clicked into a captivating groove under the guidance of Mikhail Youzhny. A maiden ATP title in Stockholm last month, followed by his first Masters 1000 final in Paris, adds his name to potential proteges ready to displace the ‘big three’ in 2020.
“The new generation is already there. Guys like Medvedev and Khachanov and Rublev, the Russians, and Tsitsipas and Zverev and Thiem, Denis, Felix (Auger-Aliassime), this generation, it has already established themselves in the top 20 of the world,” said Djokovic, offering his opinion on when the Next Gen will lift a major.
“Now these guys are starting to believe, more and more, that they can actually fight for the biggest trophies with the other guys. So, I think it's a matter of time, it's a matter of when things come together in terms of experience, in terms of a good given day as well.
“If you have a great week, you can win, you can even win a slam, but then can you really do it consistently throughout your career, year after year. That's probably where very, very few players are able to do that. And for that, it takes a bigger, a more complete package in terms of player and person and dedication and all these different things.”
Djokovic certainly displayed the complete package in Paris, ready to reclaim his crown in London.