Tennis great Novak Djokovic celebrated his 33rd birthday on Friday. The World No.1 from Serbia has won 17 Grand Slam titles, the third-most in history for a male player and has also won five ATP World Tour Finals. Djokovic emerged as a fierce competitor to the Nadal-Federer duopoly after lifting his first Grand Slam in 2008. A major part in Novak Djokovic's success was his early life struggle when the NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) Alliance countries bombed Serbia for a period of 78 days in 1999.
Speaking to Graham Bensinger in an interview, the five-time Wimbledon champion revealed that his family used to find shelter 500 feet away from the Novak Djokovic house to hide during the Belgrade Bombings. Djokovic reveals that it was a horrifying experience for everyone, especially children because they did not understand what was happened. Novak Djokovic concedes while he does not remember most of it, he recalls feeling unsafe and disturbed emotionally.
The Serbian tennis star added that after a month, they stopped reacting to the situation. The 12th Novak Djokovic birthday party was held at a tennis club and the World No.1 recalls that as everyone was singing the birthday song, a plane was flying over.
In the interview, the Serbian tennis ace revealed an incident when the Novak Djokovic family had to flee their house to remain safe. Djokovic said that during the first or second night of the bombing, his mother hit her head and fell unconscious after a huge explosion. The World No.1 reveals he was crying because of the bombs and his mother was not responding but fortunately, his father could get her back to normal.
He added that the family collected their stuff and fled the Novak Djokovic house. Djokovic revealed that he was being carried along with his brother by his father when he slipped. The Serbian ace looked behind to see a plane dropping things and the ground shaking, which remains one of the most traumatic images he saw in his childhood.
The Novak Djokovic net worth figure today stands at an estimated $220 million, as reported by Celebrity Net Worth. Djokovic has also signed many sponsorship and endorsement deals over the years. He has endorsed brands like Lacoste, ASICS shoes, Uniqlo, Telekom Srbija as well as German nutritional supplement brand FitLine. He is also an ambassador for Ultimate Software. As reported by Essentially Sports, Djokovic receives around $20.6 million a year through sponsorship from Lacoste and other endorsement deals. Djokovic has accumulated $132 million in career prize money, the most in tennis history by any player.