Novak Djokovic has been the game's top player for more than a year but the
Serbian is not taking his world number one ranking for granted.
Djokovic, who has clinched four of the last
five grand slams and posted a remarkable win-loss record of 70-6 in 2011, is
well aware that fortunes can change very quickly in the sport.
"I don't consider myself being on the top of the world, being
untouchable or unbeatable," the 24-year-old told reporters on Friday while
preparing for his opening match at the Indian Wells ATP tournament.
"That's out of the question. I always
try to give 100 percent in every practice that I have, I always want to have
the positive mindset in preparing well for every event, for every season."
Asked what had been his proudest achievement
since the start of his red-hot run last year, Djokovic replied: "I'm very,
very proud of my consistency, the results throughout the whole year.
"But the biggest success was Wimbledon,
winning that title, winning the tournament that I always dreamed of winning, so
I guess I can take that out as my proudest."
Djokovic, who outlasted Spaniard Rafa Nadal
5-7 6-4 6-2 6-7 7-5 in an epic final at the Australian Open in January, will be
aiming for a fourth consecutive grand slam crown at the French Open in June.
Roland Garros has always been his favourite
grand slam venue but he knows he will face an uphill task their on its
claycourt surface in a tournament he has yet to win.
"I've had a good couple of years playing
in Roland Garros, unfortunately I didn't reach the finals yet in Paris,"
Djokovic said. "I have played three semi-finals there, mostly against
Rafa, and had some really good matches there.
"I love playing at Roland Garros, so
hopefully this year I can make at least a step further."
GRAND SLAM TALK
While Djokovic accepted there would be
speculation about a calendar year grand slam following his successful title
defence at the Australian Open, he prefers to let others do the talking.
"The fact is that there is always
pressure and always expectations for somebody who is a top player, and it's
something that you can understand and expect," the Serb said. "But
you have to deal with the pressure.
"You have to understand it, cherish it
and accept it as a challenge, just try to take the best out of it. I need to
keep my single-minded focus ... because that is the way that I can stay
grounded and I can stay committed.
"For all the other speculations off the
court, I cannot influence those and I understand that there will be talk."
Djokovic, who beat Nadal 4-6 6-3 6-2 in last
year's final at Indian Wells on the way to a 41-0 win streak that finally ended
with his French Open semi-final loss to Roger Federer, was delighted to be
"It's always good to be back in a place
where I have done so well in the last five years, played finals and winning two
titles," he said. "It's always something to look forward to because
it's one of the best events that we have in the sport.
"You play against best players in the
world and the conditions here are suitable to my style of the game. The courts
are a little bit slower, which I like and prefer better, so I'm looking forward
to this week."
Djokovic, also champion at Indian Wells in
2008, will face Kazakhstan qualifier Andrey Golubev in the second round, having
been given a first-round bye.