Djokovic relieved to play pain-free after years

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Florida: Novak Djokovic insists he is playing pain free for the first time in “years” as he pursues his comeback at the Miami Masters. The former world number one has been beset with an elbow injury that sidelined him for six months after he was forced to retire at the quarter-finals of Wimbledon last year.

A return to action at the Australian Open with a modified serving action resulted in a fourth round defeat while a limp exit at Indian Wells last week only heightened doubts that the 30 year-old would ever add to his total of 12 Grand Slams.

Yet as the Serbian star fine tuned his attempt to win in Key Biscayne for a record seventh time, he spoke of finally putting an end to the injury torment which has blighted his efforts to return to the form which saw him become the first man since the legendary Australian Rod Laver to hold all four majors at once less than two years ago.

“I actually started playing pain-free in the last two days. It`s quite refreshing because everything else had pain involved,” Djokovic said. “The last few days have been first in a long, long time that I could actually be focused on the game rather than have something in my mind and be worried about whether I am going to have pain or not.”

Asked by AFP to clarify his injury situation, Djokovic added: “Actually it`s the first time in years (he has been injury free).” Djokovic`s physical problems have clearly affected his once seemingly impenetrable mental strength.

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