Djokovic’s father recalls Serbia bombing – “I will never forgive them”

Novak Djokovic’s father Srdjan Djokovic recalled the horrific Serbia bombing of 1999, saying that it traumatised him and his family.

NATO’s bombing of Serbia in 1999 was a global atrocity that left the world shocked. Serbians were left to suffer the consequences, something they did not deserve at all.

Among those who were struggling were Srdjan, his family and a young Novak. The future superstar was living with his widowed grandfather in Belgrade. Bombs rained from above as young Djokovic evaded them, while his parents were stuck at a mountain resort more than four hours away.

The couple used to work overnight to fund their son’s tennis career. He repaid them by continuing to work hard and achieve his goals, while also dealing with the shocking crimes happening in Serbia.

Djokovic’s father recalled the horrific Serbia bombing of 1999, and explained how it scarred him and his family.

“I will never forgive them for bombing,” he told Novosti

“He (Novak Djokovic) was 12 then. A huge bomb fell in (municipality) Rakovica; all the windows shattered in our apartment in Banjica in ’99.

“We fell out of bed, ran into the hallway and cried, ‘God, save us – don’t give us away’. These are traumas that last a lifetime.”

Shaping his life

The World No. 1 claimed the bombings helped shape his tennis career, and claimed that it shaped his mental fortitude.

“Everyone who could fit here came – there was no limitation,” Djokovic said.

“We were waking up every single night at 2am or 3am for two-and-a-half months because of the bombings.

“In a way these experiences made me a champion, it made us tougher, made us more hungry for success.”

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