Novak Djokovic is now in the recovery stage following his stunning upset at the Madrid Open, where Grigor Dimitrov knocked off Djokovic 7-6, 6-7, 6-3.
The first step in Djokovic's recovery will be getting his ankle right. In the match against Dimitrov, he was forced to take a lengthy medical timeout to address a twisted ankle. According to Yahoo Sports, Djokovic injured that same ankle in the Davis Cup last month.
While tennis professionals commonly deal with nagging injuries, it will be important for Djokovic to make sure his ankle is at 100 percent in order to get his confidence back up.
That ankle injury may have been a key element that factored into Djokovic's early exit. In an article published by The Star, Djokovic said he has been unable to practice because of the injury he suffered.
“For 12 days after Monte Carlo I haven’t touched the racquet," Djokovic said. "I didn’t know up to Saturday if I’m going to come here or not because of the ankle.”
The second step for Djokovic after he gets his ankle healed is to get his attitude right. Against Dimitrov, Djokovic looked flustered at a few close calls from the umpire that didn't go in his favor.
In the same Star article, Djokovic let his frustration with the calls known.
“I don’t want to discuss those calls," said Djokovic. "The balls were really, really close. I thought it was out, but, okay. You know, it’s the chair umpire’s decision in the end, and I respect that. In the first set, every single close call that I went to look at the ball and the chair umpire comes to see, I got whistled. I don’t see any reason for that. I didn’t do anything bad."
Djokovic can also work on improving his focus on the court. According to a tweet by Jason McIntyre of The Big Lead, the tennis star shouted out profanity towards to the crowd.
Novak Djokovic Shouted Something in Serbian at the Madrid Open Crowd, and it May Not Have Been Nice [Video] is.gd/IIkdZu— Jason McIntyre (@TheBigLead) May 8, 2013
As Djokovic attempts to recover from his shocking defeat at the hands of Dimitrov, getting his ankle healthy and improving his attitude are two extremely positive steps he can take.