Murray, Nadal look for Brisbane bounce-back

Murray, Nadal look for Brisbane bounce-back

The final of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in the UAE capital of Abu Dhabi between world no.1 Novak Djokovic, and South African Kevin Anderson, the defending champion, was a pulsating affair, which the Serbian ATP-ranked No.1 player finally took by two sets to one.

"He is always going to be a number one because he was the number one in the world and a multiple grand slam victor, so he has the number one champion's mentality", said Djokovic in his interview at the Mubadala WTC.

Djokovic extended his dominance over Anderson, whose only victory in 10 matches against the Serb came a decade ago in Miami. Thiem was the last-minute replacement for the indisposed World No.2 Rafael Nadal who pulled out of the third-place play-off so as not to push his body too far too soon.

He did not play in February or March and Friday's three-set loss to Anderson was his first time on court in a public match since he had to retire hurt against Juan Manuel del Potro in the semi-finals of the US Open in September due to knee problems. As a fan, I salute that change.' Djokovic also spoke about his current shape: 'I am playing good tennis in last six months.

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Asked if there is a record he dreams of capturing before the end of his career, Djokovic said: "I would lie if I say I didn't want to get to as high as Grand Slam wins number possible. He was playing a very high level consistently throughout the match and I had to work really hard for the win". "The season just started for me, it was a goal to be here", Nadal added.

"There's a new generation of players, Nadal and Federer are still there, [Andy] Murray and [Stan] Wawrinka are coming back, Zverev is the leader of this Next Gen", Djokovic said.

"Like I said a couple of days ago in Abu-Dhabi, for me is important to keeping doing steps forward not making steps back".

Nadal and tour players Andy Murray, Nick Kyrgios, Kei Nishikori and Tsonga promoted the Brisbane International this morning with a light-hearted group picture with New Year's Eve glasses and hats. I want to make the things the right way, step by step and that's it.

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