London: "I dare to dream about becoming the best player. Now I have this special award and I think everything is possible," said Serbian tennis giant Novak Djokovic, who has been named the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year.
"Serbia is a small and beautiful country, but also very poor," he said emotionally after receiving the award here Monday. "It has a lot of troubles and wars in the last 20 years." However, the man said he never lost his dream. "I hope each and every one in the world could dream."
The Serbian, who for a long time was overshadowed by the glory of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, rose up in 2011 to win Australian, Wimbledon and U.S. Open Grand Slam titles.
He also grabbed the No.1 ranking from the tenacious Nadal. The first player representing Serbia to win a Grand Slam singles title, Djokovic, 24, is also the youngest player to edge into the semifinals of all four Grand Slams in the open era.
Although his dominant performance dropped a little bit at the end of this season, Djokovic still proved his reign with a season 70-6 record.
Legendary tennis player Pete Sampras described his season as "the best I have seen in my lifetime".
When asked to choose between titles of French Open, the only Grand Slam title he lacked, and the Olympics, Djokovic didn't hide his ambition.
"Why not both," he said. "If I have a choice, then why not both."
"Everything is possible," he said. "I am learning how to make the right schedule and how to prepare for big events. I will try to set up my form."
"Djoker" would become serious at the mentioning of adversity, agreeing that his career was hard sometimes and took a lot out of him to reach to the top. But "pain is temporary, and success is permanent," he said.
Talking about the Olympics, Djokovic said he hoped to watch many other sports, especially athletics and swimming.
"Unfortunately four years ago in Beijing, I wasn't able to see other sports, because tennis event only went on for a week and I had to move on to the other part of the world," he said.
"So this time I am looking forward to enjoying other sports as well," he beamed.
Story first published on: Tuesday, 07 February 2012 16:36 IST