Wimbledon’s grass-eating duo from Serbia: Djokovic supports Stevanovic

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Novak Djokovic‘s fellow Serbian tennis player Natalija Stevanovic is making her career breakthrough at the age of 28 by advancing to the third round of Wimbledon. The ATP legend supports his compatriot’s success and says that he hopes they will both eat grass at Wimbledon, referencing his tradition to chew a bit of grass after triumphs at The Championships.

Natalija Stevanovic smiles and fistpumps at Wimbledon 2023
Natalija Stevanovic at Wimbledon 2023

Playing her first ever Grand Slam main draw, qualifier Stevanovic made waves by stunning former world No.1 and 2021 Wimbledon runner-up Karolina Pliskova in the first round. The world No.225 didn’t stop there and continued her impressive run with a triumph over Tamara Korpatsch, her fifth straight-set victory at the tournament.

Just like Djokovic, Stevanovic likes to celebrate her wins by tasting the legendary grass courts. The record 23-time men’s singles major champion was happy to hear that: “Ha-ha, fantastic! I didn’t know she ate grass, I hope we can eat it together.”

Stevanovic was very happy to hear that Djokovic is supporting her and responded: “We can graze! You know how! We can graze without any problems, both of us.”

Natalija Stevanovic kisses her husband Nikola Stevanovic after defeating Karolina Pliskova at Wimbledon 2023
Natalija Stevanovic kisses her husband Nikola Stevanovic after defeating Karolina Pliskova at Wimbledon 2023

Although Stevanovic admires Djokovic, her childhood idol was Rafael Nadal, which is reflected in her Instagram handle “Nadalija.” Explaining its origin, the Serbian WTA player said that everyone used to call her Nadalija when she was seven or eight years old, and her brother-in-law included the nickname in her first email address.

In 2020, Natalija (formerly Kostic) became engaged to her coach, Nikola Stevanovic, during the Hua Hin tournament, where she competed in her first WTA main draw. The couple got married in 2021.

Stevanovic’s journey in London is set to face another formidable test in the upcoming third round. Standing in her way is none other than the two-time Wimbledon champion, Petra Kvitova, who is seeded ninth this year.

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