06 April 2012 10:37

BELGRADE - Novak Djokovic may not be able to match last year's sensational 41-match winning streak but the world number one believes he is in just as good form heading into the claycourt season.

The Serb successfully defended his Sony Ericsson Open title with a 6-1 7-6 win over Britain's Andy Murray in last weekend’s final at the Miami Masters Series event where he never dropped a set during the two-week tournament.

"I feel that being number one and having (had) the best year of my career in 2011, I'm playing at the peak of my form and I'm playing the best tennis that I have played," Djokovic, 24, told reporters after his victory at Crandon Park.

"So I have to use that as much as I can, coming into every tournament that I play. The competition is getting stronger, I believe. Everybody is so professional nowadays.

"You have the top players playing in all the top events. That wasn't the case maybe five, 10 years ago. So that makes it even tougher for anybody to win a title. But I'm ready for it."

Djokovic's win at Miami last year came in the midst of an extraordinary run of victories that began with the Australian Open and ended in June with a loss to Roger Federer in the French Open semi-final.

"The season was incredible, especially the opening five, six months of the year. Every year is different. I'm coming in this year with a grand glam win and now a Miami win, couple of semi-finals. I think I'm playing equally well as I did 12 months ago," said Djokovic.

"But again, it's different ... I still want to fight for every title, like everybody else. I have this positive mindset, not really defending or calculating how many points I can lose and things like that. So every tournament for me is equally important."
Now the tour moves to the clay courts and Djokovic, who needs a win at the French Open to complete a career grand slam, says he is relishing the change of surface.

"Knowing that I had such a great clay court season last year and some clay court wins in major events gives me confidence prior to this one." (Reuters)