"I'm smilling, inside and outside. I just love this sport so much," the 12-time Grand Slam champion said. “I was waiting for this moment for six months to get out on the court and play a match. I got a great opponent today, the No. 5 in the world, so it was a fantastic test for me to see where I am. So glad to be back and so nice to start in a country and a city where I have the greatest memories.”
After pulling out from Abu Dhabi exho and ATP Doha event due to pain in his right elbow, Novak is travelling to Australia where he will take part in two exhibition tournaments. After the two events, the decision will be made about his participation at the first Grand Slam of the season, the Australian Open (15-28 January, 2018), where Nole has been crowned champion six times.