Tennis world explodes after Novak Djokovic drops major announcement

Novak Djokovic, pictured here speaking to the media alongside Roger Federer at the Laver Cup in 2018.
Novak Djokovic speaks to the media alongside Roger Federer at the Laver Cup in 2018. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images for The Laver Cup)

Novak Djokovic has sent the tennis world into a frenzy after it was announced he will team up with Roger Federer, Rafa Nadal and Andy Murray to play for Team Europe at the Laver Cup in September.

Captained by Bjorn Borg, Europe's dream line-up will take on John McEnroe's Team World in the fifth edition of the event at London's O2 stadium from September 23-25.

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It will be the first time Wimbledon champion Djokovic will appear in the tournament since 2018 when it was held in Chicago, and the first time ever that all four members of the 'Big 4' will play together.

The last time Djokovic played in 2018, the only other member of the 'Big 4' to play was Federer, but in 2022 Team Europe will have all four at their disposal.

"It's the only competition where you can play in a team environment with guys that you're normally competing against and to be joining Rafa, Roger and Andy - three of my biggest all-time rivals," Djokovic said on Friday.

"It's going to be a truly unique moment in the history of our sport."

Team Europe still has two roster spots to fill, while Canada's Felix Auger-Aliassime, America's Taylor Fritz and Argentina's Diego Schwartzman have so far been named in Team World's six-strong squad.

Australian star and Wimbledon finalist Nick Kyrgios has played for Team World in the past.

Team Europe are bidding for a fifth-successive Laver Cup triumph and are unbeaten in the format having won in Prague 2017, Chicago 2018, Geneva 2019 and Boston 2021.

"I don't think I could have imagined having these four icons of the sport on one team together," Borg said.

"I know they, like I, appreciate the significance of this moment and will be truly up for it.

"Each year our goal is to win. With Rafa, Roger, Andy and Novak on the team, I like our chances."

Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, pictured here on Team Europe at the Laver Cup in 2018.
Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer on Team Europe at the Laver Cup in 2018. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images for The Laver Cup)

Tennis world erupts over Laver Cup dream team

Federer hasn't played in over 12 months after undergoing a third knee surgery following his loss in the fourth round at Wimbledon in 2021.

However he confirmed earlier this year that he would team up with Nadal to make his return at the Laver Cup, before making a comeback to the ATP tour in Basel in October.

Murray then confirmed his participation earlier this month, before Djokovic's announcement completed the dream team.

Between them, the four greats of men's tennis have 66 grand slam titles to their names - Nadal with 22, Djokovic 21, Federer 20 and Murray three.

The four players have dominated men's tennis for nearly two decades, capturing 66 of the past 76 grand slam titles on offer and winning every Wimbledon title since 2003.

The last player not in the 'Big 4' to win Wimbledon was Australian great Lleyton Hewitt, who won the second of his two majors at the All England Club in 2002.

One of Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray held the World No.1 ranking spot every week between February 2004 and February 2022, before Russian star and current No.1 Daniil Medvedev ended that run.

Tennis fans and commentators were sent into meltdown over the news that Djokovic had agreed to play on Friday.

with agencies

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