Milos Raonic feels Novak Djokovic could make a Roger Federer like comeback in the Australian Open after making his return. The Swiss made a splash last year by winning his 18th Grand Slam in Australia, something the Serb is more than capable of emulating.
Djokovic, who is recovering from an elbow injury, has not played since his loss in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon earlier this year and is expected to return to action for the first time at the Qatar Open in Doha during the first week of January.
Federer has won seven titles this year, including the Australian Open and a record eighth Wimbledon title to overtake Sampras' seven championship wins. The Swiss ace's biggest takeaway from 2017 was his ability to manage his fitness, which came with playing fewer games and choosing his tournaments intelligently, something that Djokovic may have to consider if he has to last the distance.
The Serb has been making a lot of changes behind the scenes to bring him up to speed with the competition, recently appointing Radek Stepanek as his tennis coach to look after his preparation alongside Andre Agassi.
Stepanek announced his retirement a few days back owing to fitness issues but made it clear that he does not want to walk away from the sport. He will offer his valuable service to Djokovic on a day-to-day basis and make sure that he is fit to compete at the highest level after a disappointing year.
With all the preparation behind him, Raonic expects Djokovic to make a blast in the Australian Open, trumping the likes of Federer and Rafael Nadal.
"Novak's played well [at the Australian Open] and he's had a lot of time to train and recover," Raonic said, as quoted by the Express. "He could do the thing that Roger was able to do [this year]. Roger's been playing great.
"It's hard to know, it's really hard to know. If you look at it from how things ended last year it's Roger and Rafa, but it's hard to discount guys when they've had time to train. I think Roger proved a lot of people wrong in that sense."