Novak Djokovic says he watched Ana Ivanovic's retirement announcement with a lot of emotion, but believes that his friend and fellow Serb was ready to stop playing.
The former WTA No. 1 announced that she was hanging up her racquet in a video message a week ago, saying physical and motivational issues meant she could not compete at the highest level. Djokovic and Ivanovic played together as kids in junior events in Serbia, and came up together on the pro circuit. In 2008, they became the first Serbs to win Grand Slam singles titles.
"I was very emotional when I watched it, simply because I've known Ana since we were five years old," he said. "We go back a long time. We're friends, colleagues. You know, we've shared many moments together on the tour—in the junior circuit in Serbia, internationally. We've grown up together and our families have known each other.