Djokovic claims 7th Wimbledon title
Serbian star Novak Djokovic has claimed a 21st career Grand Slam title, winning Wimbledon for the seventh time in a hard fought final against Australian Nick Kyrgios.
Chasing his first major Kyrgios charged out of the blocks to win the first set 6-4, only for Djokovic to claim an early break of serve in the second set to establish a dominance he would not relinquish, winning 4-6 6-3 6-4 7-6 in a match that lasted three and a half hours.
Djokovic's triumph was his fourth successive Wimbledon title, either side of 2020 where the tournament was cancelled amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
The 35 year old equals Pete Sampras' record of seven Wimbledon crowns with the result, his first Grand Slam title of the year after being deported from Australia in January due to his vaccination stance.
It was Djokovic’s first tour-level win in three attempts against Kyrgios, who had never been beyond the quarter-finals at a Grand Slam prior to this fortnight in London.
“I have lost words for what this tournament, this trophy means to me, my team, my family,” said Djokovic at the trophy presentation. “I’ve said this many times. It always has been and always will be the most special tournament in my heart, the one that motivated me, inspired me to start playing tennis in a small mountain resort in Serbia where my parents used to run a restaurant.
“I was four or five years old and I saw Pete Sampras win his first Wimbledon in 1993. I asked my Dad and Mum to buy me a racquet, and my first image of tennis was grass and Wimbledon.
"I always dreamed of coming here, just playing in this court, and then realising the childhood dream of winning this trophy. Every single time it gets more meaningful and more special, so I’m very blessed and very thankful to be standing here with the trophy.”
Kyrgios will be left to rue a high error count, particularly at key moments, as he struggled to find consistency with his aggressive approach.
“He’s a bit of a god, I’m not gonna lie,” said Kyrgios when asked about Djokovic at the trophy presentation. “I thought I played well… It’s been an amazing couple of weeks for me personally.
“Myself, my team, I think we are all exhausted, we’ve played so much tennis. I definitely need a well-earned vacation after this one. I’m just really happy with this result, it’s probably the best of my career. Maybe one day I’ll be here again.”
IMAGE: Sporting News.