World No.1 Novak Djokovic proved yet again Melbourne Park is his domain after a record ninth Australian Open title, but the 33-year-old has revealed the toll of travelling without his family is taking on him.
Djokovic's 18th Grand Slam has continued the debate around whether he will catch Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal and finish his career with the most titles next to his name.
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Djokovic edged to within two of the Swiss and Spaniard's benchmark 20 slams with a comprehensive 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 Australian Open final victory over Daniil Medvedev on Sunday night.
While the incredible Serb has time on his side and is predicted by many to finish with the most titles, Father Time appears to be one of his biggest obstacles on his quest.
And constantly being away from his wife and two young children is weighing heavily on the super Serb.
"At times it rips my heart apart," Djokovic said after etching his name on the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup for a mind-blowing ninth time.
"I will have to revise my schedule comparing to the last year or any other season before this.
"Obviously time away from family definitely is something that has an impact on me.
"I'll have to see with these rules and regulations and restrictions in place all over the world, Europe.
"Not being able to take my family on the road is something that is a big problem for me."
Djokovic feeling fresh at 33 after Aus Open title
Despite a gruelling tournament, in which he had to overcome an abdominal injury, Djokovic said he is feeling fresh and hungry at the age of 33.
But the World No.1 said he is smarter about his schedule and training now he approaches the end of his career.
"I don't feel like I'm old or tired or anything like that," he said.
"But I know that biologically and realistically things are different than they were 10 years ago for me.
"I have to be smarter with my schedule and peak at the right time. So the slams are the tournaments where I want to be able to perform my best."
Having won the tournament, and Nadal's exit in the quarter-final, Djokovic locked up the No.1 spot next month.
This means he will overtake Federer's record of 310 weeks as World No.1.
Having past that achievement, Djokovic said his main goal now is to focus on Grand Slams and eclipse Federer and Nadal atop the tennis world.
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