The No.2 ranking man in single’s tennis according to the Association of Tennis Professionals, Novak Djokovic is considered one of the greatest players of all time. As of August of 2016, he holds the best match winning rate in Open Era. Additionally, his racquet work secured him 12 Grand Slam titles, 6 Australian Open titles, 3 Wimbledon titles, and 2 US Open titles. On top of all of that, Djokovic happens to be a polyglot with five languages under his belt: Serbian, French Italian, German, and English. Before he picked up a racquet, Djokovic was just a kid growing up in the 1990s.
Novak, the eldest of three children, was born to Srdan and Dijana Djokovic on May 22nd of 1987. He spent the entirety of his youth in Serbia. His love of tennis came early. In fact, it’s said that Djokovic began playing at just four years old. Just two years later, at six, he was spotted by famed tennis player Jelena Gencic. By the time he reached 12, Gencic realized that the young player needed better competition. That’s what drove him to apply to the Pilic tennis academy in Germany; he spent four years there. At the ripe old age of 14, he kicked off his international career. Djokovic’s educational career ended with his graduation from a high school in Belgrade.
That’s a fact that Novak commonly laments. In an article by NDTV, he stated the following, “ I never went to university. Well, if I can say, that’s one wish I have in life, one regret, that I would like to go in some university, because I really like the idea of educating yourself and being part of a group of students.” In 2007, Djokovic founded the Novak Djokovic Foundation to help underprivileged Serbian children achieve an education.