Doha: Defending champion and former world No.1 Novak Djokovic will be looking to make it a hat-trick of titles in Doha, but the Serbian ace, more importantly, would consider the 2018 QatarExxonMobil Open as an ideal opportunity to reclaim his recently-lost air of dominance in world tennis.
Djokovic, who defended his title in Doha last year by defeating then world No.1 Andy Murray in three sets, endured an injury-plagued season after that and would be keen to regain his form and fitness at the ATP award-winning event to be held from January 2 to 9 at the Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex in Doha.
The 30-year-had previously held the No. 1 spot in the ATP rankings for a total of 223 weeks but his last major tournament appearance was at the Wimbledon where he was forced to retire in the quarterfinal against Tomas Berdych.
Djokovic though, will have to face a tough challenge as the field includes Dominic Thiem, Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Tomas Berdych, Richard Gasquet, Fernando Verdasco and Pablo Carreno Busta.
Thiem, who recently broke into the top five in the rankings for the first time in his career, will be hoping to consolidate his position in the top bracket.
Tournament Director Karim Alami said: “We are delighted to once again bring some of the world best players to Qatar for another round of sensational tennis at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open. We’ve always been passionate about organizing the best tournament and we have been consistent in achieving this. The 2018 Qatar ExxonMobil Open is once again parading some of the strongest field in its category which is a proof of our commitment over the years.”