As the ATP circuit is going deeper into the clay court season, Novak Djokovic is still trying to get things on the right path. A sloppy first part of the season dug serious holes in Serb's level of confidence. Ranked second in the general ranking, he is finding himself floating across troubled waters as he faces the prospect of a bigger fall.

Twelve months ago, he was still at the top playing some high-quality and bugs-free tennis. A lot has changed in the meantime and the upcoming month could see Djokovic falling out of the top 3 in years. Having won a single ATP title this season, the Serb champion winner of 12 Grand Slam in singles is expected to resume his schedule in Madrid, a Masters 1000 event he won last year after beating Andy Murray in the final.

Madrid, Rome and the French Open cast a heavy burden on Djokovic's shoulders

The Serbian tennis machinery did a great work last year by winning in Madrid and capping his first french open title while in Rome's final he felt to Andy Murray. Those extraordinary results on such short time will put plenty on his plates this season. There are about 3600 ranking points to defend in a 6 weeks time-span and without any last-minute improvements, he will go down in no time. The next guys waiting in line are hungry wolves and Wawrinka, Federer or Rafael Nadal are fully aware of their chances.

Back in 2015 and the first half of 2016 Djokovic was so dominant on the tennis court regardless of the surface. His defensive skills used to turn every attempt from the opposition side into meaningless efforts.

Once the spell was castes away, so did the aura of invincibility he used to walk along with on each encounter he had. Those small cracks evolved into something even more dangerous like real holes of disbelief and questionable work-ethic.

That certain sense of disbelief is one of the things that his opponents are feeding themselves from nowadays.

So there is no wonder why he is struggling to get past low-ranked players, some fine athlete but who used to had no chance to even bother the Serb.

2016 French Open title was indeed a relief for Djokovic but it also marked the end of his era of dominance

It's a lot easier to assess Djokovic's run of 2017 by taking a look at his official numbers.

According to the ATP official website, he has a 14-4 win/loss record having one the title in Doha back in January. Two of those 4 losses were in front of Nick Kyrgios, the young Aussie tennis star who took some time off to deal with unexpected family issues.

Last year, there was a sense of fulfilment for Djokovic once he won that elusive French Open title. This moment is also a well-grounded mark of decay. Several weeks after that, he went on losing to Sam Querrey at Wimbledon in what was called the biggest upset of the season.

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