It was a historic feat for Novak Djokovic as he defeated Matteo Berrettini in the Wimbledon finals to clinch his 20th Grand Slam title. The win at Wimbledon now equals his Grand Slam tally with that of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
The Serb lost the first set only to come back and defeat the Italian 6-7(4) 6-4 6-4 6-3 and claim his third Slam of the year. It was a dream come true for the Serb who has toiled really hard to reach the summit equalling two of the best players in tennis.
When asked about his feeling of equalling Federer and Nadal, Djokovic was very humbled. He admitted that the two greats have pushed him to this level and they have a huge role in him winning the 20th Grand Slam. He feels that the duo has helped him develop physically, mentally and tactically as a player.
“I have mentioned this many times before. I have to pay great tribute to Rafa and Roger,” Djokovic said during his on-court interview. “They are legends of our sport and they are the two most important players I ever faced in my career. They are the reason I am where I am today. They have helped me realise what I needed to do to get stronger mentally, physically, tactically.”
Djokovic also spoke about his struggles when he was not able to break into the top 10 rankings in the world. He also was underwhelming early on in his career when he faced Federer or Nadal. But he made massive improvements to come this far to stand at the same level with the duo.
“When I broke into the top 10 for the first time, for three to four years I lost most of the big matches I played against these guys,” Djokovic added. “Something shifted end of 2010, the beginning of 2011. The last ten years has been an incredible journey that’s not stopping here.”
Djokovic has now won the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon. But he still has a lot to achieve this year. The Serb is looking to be the first man, and second player overall, to complete a Calendar Slam in the Open Era. He will achieve that feat if he wins this year’s US Open.
“I could definitely envision that happening. I am hoping. I am definitely going to give it a shot,” he said regarding his chances on the Calendar Slam. “I am in great form, obviously playing well. Playing my best tennis at Grand Slams is the highest priority I have at this stage of my career. So, let’s keep it going.”
The World No. 1 can take it a notch further and win the Calendar Golden Slam if he manages to bag all four Slams and the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics.