• Thu
  • Dec 25, 2014
  • Updated: 6:24pm
SportTennis

Novak Djokovic addresses United Nations

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 25 August, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 25 August, 2013, 5:02am

World number one Novak Djokovic took a break from his US Open preparations to address the United Nations, where he encouraged youngsters to follow his path to stardom.

The Serb, 26, told the UN General Assembly, where an International Day of Sport for Development and Peace was declared for April 6, that he was inspired to play tennis by watching United States great Pete Sampras.

"I dreamed of being just like him, the number one tennis player in the world," Djokovic said.

"It took me 13 years to achieve. I hope this international day will motivate each of us to invest in additional efforts in cultivating the intrinsic sporting values such as fair play, teamwork and respect for the opponent.

"Sport can help direct general attention to the most at risk and vulnerable in our community, especially disadvantaged children. When we encourage kids to dream big and work hard, we can make a tangible difference in their lives."

Djokovic later returned to the US Open venue of Flushing Meadows where the final grand slam tournament of the season gets underway tomorrow and where he was champion in 2011.

"It was a real honour to address the UN," Djokovic later tweeted.

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