Djokovic back in Paris to mend his broken heart

Tue May 24, 2016 1:49pm EDT
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By Pritha Sarkar

PARIS (Reuters) - Novak Djokovic hopes that his "great passion for tennis" will finally earn him the one trophy he craves more than any other -- the French Open.

Twelve months after surprise champion Stan Wawrinka used his wondrous backhand to knife Djokovic's Roland Garros dreams, the Serbian was hoping he would be able to mend his broken heart by becoming the first man in almost 50 years to hold all four grand slam titles at the same time.

Looking to achieve a feat that was last achieved by Rod Laver in 1969, Djokovic began his pursuit of the only major title missing from his collection with a no-nonsense 6-4 6-1 6-1 win over Taiwan's Lu Yen-hsun in the first round on Tuesday.

"Well, it's not the first time that I'm experiencing such anticipation and expectations," the 11-times grand slam champion told reporters.

"It's been five years in a row ... where I'm approaching this tournament as one of the favourites. Obviously people wonder if this is the year or not, and I wonder myself."

In 2012, the world number one also had a chance to emulate Laver but was thwarted by a rampaging Rafael Nadal in the final.

Last year it appeared as if the stars had finally aligned for Djokovic when he safely navigated past Nadal and Andy Murray to reach the final to face an opponent barely anyone thought would win.

But it was not to be and Djokovic was left in tears.   Continued...

Tennis - French Open - Roland Garros - Novak Djokovic of Serbia vs Yen-Hsun Lu of Taiwan - Paris, France - 24/05/16. Novak Djokovic in action. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier