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Djokovic Aims to Keep His Tennis and Love-Life Separate

08/07/2014 14:06 BST | Updated 06/09/2014 10:59 BST

On Thursday this week, still reeling from his Wimbledon triumph, Novak Djokovic will marry Jelena Ristic at a secret location on an island off Montenegro.

The couple, who have known each other for nine years, became engaged last September and Djokovic took to Twitter a few months ago to announce the couple were soon to have a baby.

But it was on the centre court after his somewhat excruciating win against father-of-four Roger Federer that he told Sue Barker and everyone else who was listening or watching that the win was for Jelena and his future child.

There is no one who would not doubt the sincerity of the occasion when he spoke of his 6-7,6-4,7-6,5-7,6-4 victory against Federer. In a most touching manner, he said: "I would like to dedicate this to my future wife and our future baby. I'm going to become a father soon, I'm still preparing for that. It's a great joy in life."

Djokovic to me seems to have a healthy balance in his life and doesn't, according to those who are close to him, let tennis rule his life. His relationship with his future wife and looking ahead to having their first child in October, is important for him to try to balance out his priorities. Some tennis pundits believe that domestic calm will undoubtedly bring order to his tennis as well.

As Kevin Mitchell, writing in the Guardian newspaper said: "If those two events (marriage and fatherhood) cannot put the champion's tennis in perspective, nothing can."

What was noticeable during Sunday's match was that Jelena wasn't in the players' box to cheer Djokovic on or be seen by the tv cameras to be biting her nails or putting her head in her hands. She said recently: "I have to be careful as I don't want to get too emotional and distract Novak. It's about what the guys want. We don't want them to see us get emotional. When I'm at home watching him on the TV, I get even more passionate because I know the cameras aren't on me.

"My job is to keep Novak clam and relaxed before his matches. We are emotional partners. The emotional support we give to each other is very important. It's the same for me as well. He is very supportive and encouraging."

Djokovic has apparently turned to Federer, the father of two sets of twins, for some advice on how to manage the relationship of being a husband/father and world-class tennis player and who has now become world No 1.

Djokovic is open and happy to talk about the challenges he faces and obstacles he has had to overcome. There was no swearing or cursing from either him or Federer on the court - no mutterings under their breath when the umpire might have made a ruling with which they might not have agreed.

As he told the BBC: "I overcame a lot of challenges, in my life and tennis career in the last two years and that's why I had tears of joy. That's why it was very emotional for me to rewind the memories of what we have been through in the last three years. There are some private things I went through, that I won't talk about now, but it wasn't easy. Everyone has issues so you have to understand how to deal with them, grow as a person, strengthen your character...you can't separate yourself as a person and a professional tennis player.

"So if your mind is not clear you won't be able to compete on a high level."

But this week, when he ties the knot with Jelena - and apparently there won't be too many tennis players among the over-200 guests - he will most likely put tennis aside and have time to concentrate on his relationship and look ahead to what it means to be a father.