Any great fan of the sport can agree that 2017 has brought some incredible surprises as well as some disappointing ones. The tennis circuit, different from soccer, is a full calendar and therefore the odds of getting injured are greater. We have seen it through the years, even at the highest levels of the sport with names such as Juan Martin Del Potro being pulled out from the circuit for 2 years due to a wrist injury. Then Rafa Nadal also had his ups and downs due to his knee, and later on Andy Murray, the current world number one, had a back surgery that concerned some fans.

Even though the circuit causes many injuries from which comebacks may sound impossible or at least very difficult, 2017 has been the stage of the greatest comeback in sport’s history. Roger Federer, who suffered from a knee surgery in 2016, announced on July 26th of that same year that he would take the rest of the year off, in order to recover. 2017 has come and Roger Federer has astonished the world with his performances but yet another name is concerning the fans, Novak Djokovic.

Novak Djokovic is Out!

Novak Djokovic will no longer play for the rest of 2017. The Serbian tennis player said in a statement posted on his official website that he will be away from the sport until the end of the year in order to recover from injury to his right elbow.

Djokovic expressed himself by saying “All the doctors and experts I have visited in Serbia and around the world have agreed that this injury calls for rest, a prolonged pause in the sport is inevitable, I will do whatever it takes to recover. Also to improve certain elements of tennis that I could not work in recent years because of a demanding schedule.”

“Five months may seem like a lot on this point, but I'm sure they'll move quickly because there's a lot I want to do.

Another important moment is coming, I'll be the father for the second time, my wife Jelena and I are expecting our second child and we are preparing to welcome a new member of the family. These are the things that fill me with the greatest joy and pleasure. I'm confident that I will be ready for the start of next season.”

The injury caused Djokovic to quit his game against Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon and now he will miss the last major of the year.

It will be the first year since 2010 that the Serbian will end a year without winning any Grand Slam. However, the detail that appears to have taken the scene of this case is that his announcement was made today, July 26th. Can we expect another ultimate comeback, this time from the Serbian legend?

The demotivated former promise

Not all news on tennis is exciting or surprising. Bernard Tomic has been showing a lack of motivation and poor results throughout the year. Early eliminations have caused him to drop drastically in the world ranking and more recently the Australian prodigy revealed he might never have truly loved the sport.

Furthermore, during a sincere interview from the Aussie, he advised kids not to invest in a career in tennis, and went beyond calling the profession of elite athlete a “Calvary”.

Asked if he only plays for the money, he was yet again sincere and replied that he was never a rich kid during his childhood and that now he can afford things that he would not be able to afford otherwise.

The Romanian sexist

Tennis has seen various episodes of sexism during the past decade, mainly regarding the rights of equal prize money for the WTA circuit. However, 2017 might have topped the list with some unfortunate episodes.

Early this year, Novak Djokovic made an unfortunate comment that gave him a not so acclaimed reception by the female players, but he ended up apologizing for his poor choice of words and even sent flowers to the women’s locker room during the French Open.

Murray saved the year, on this topic, when he corrected a reporter who might have forgotten tennis is played by both men and women alike. Nevertheless, the holophotes go to Ilie Nastase, the Romanian Fed Cup Captain and former Grand Slam champion, who was involved in several sexist cases.

Notwithstanding his attitude towards Johanna Konta, during a Fed Cup match against Great Britain, that lead to Konta leaving the court in tears, Nastase has also made sexist comments towards Anne Keothavong.

The major controversy involving Nastase and Williams happened on April 25. According to the BBC, the captain of Romania was heard speculating "what color would be the son of Serena Williams." The American tennis player rebutted the racist comment and congratulated the ITF on their decision to hook Nastase.

The result of this episode is that we might not hear about Ilie Nastase for a while as he has been suspended by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) until December 2020.

The world of tennis has been a very shaky one this year, with the comebacks from Federer, Nadal, and Sharapova that have given fans a reason to celebrate, but it has also been the stage of some unpleasant episodes. With still a little less than a half year to go, all eyes have turned to North America as the following month will start in Canada and end at the Arthur Ashe Stadium.