In a Facebook Live broadcast, and also via his official website, Djokovic admitted, “My elbow is hurt due to excessive playing, and it troubles me constantly when serving, and now when hitting my forehand as well. Unfortunately, such injuries are often encountered in a professional sport, and I am very proud of the fact that I have been free from serious injuries during all these years.
“All the doctors I’ve consulted, and all the specialists I have visited, in Serbia and all over the world, have agreed that this injury requires rest. A prolonged break from the sport is inevitable. I’ll do whatever it takes to recover. I will use the upcoming period to strengthen my body and also to improve certain tennis elements that I have not been able to work on over the past years, due to a demanding schedule. Five months may seem long from this point, but I’m sure they will pass quickly because there is so much I want to do.
“Another important moment is coming, we will become parents for a second time. My wife, Jelena, and I are expecting our second child, and we are preparing to welcome a new family member. These are things that fill me with greatest happiness and delight. I’m confident I will be ready for start of the new season.”
The Serbian ends 2017 with a 32-8 match record, including two ATP World Tour titles at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in January (d. Murray) and the Aegon International last month (d. Monfils). He has won 68 career titles, for No. 7 on the Open Era title leaders’ list.