No. 1 player in the world, Novak Djokovic, won his ninth Australian Open title on Sunday and 18th Grand Slam title overall, after three sets by 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 in the finals to beat No. 4 Daniil Medvedev. Looking for some entertainment? Try out casino games offered at 12BET with a deposit bonus available for you to claim!
Djokovic closed the gap now just two Grand Slam titles away from Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who each own 20 men’s singles championships, making this Grand Slam race the closest its ever been among the three all-time greats.
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Medvedev came into the finals with a 20-match winning streak and displayed being in excellent form throughout the Australian Open. But his relative inexperience in Grand Slam finals have shown.
Medvedev, who lost in five sets to Nadal in the 2019 U.S. Open final, struggled to maintain his patience as Djokovic dug in to long rallies and shifted tactics at times, testing Medvedev’s forward movement and physicality, resulted in a lot of errors for Medvedev, 30 in which were unforced. Djokovic made just 15 unforced errors in the match.
In a short moment in time, Medvedev evened the first set at 5-5, signaling Djokovic might be in for a difficult test. But he managed up the first with a break and only had a moment of trouble after, when Medvedev broke in the first game of the second set. Djokovic broke back right away and rattled Medvedev, who struggled to fight as hard as he did for the first hour of the match.
Djokovic is likely to consider this as one of his greatest achievements, given that he was nearly knocked out of the tournament in the third round when he suffered an injury to his oblique area midway through a match against Taylor Fritz.
Despite enduring the pain, Djokovic got pushed to a fifth set and showed signs struggling to finish the match, but still pulled off to get through against Fritz and was able to manage the injury, which he called the toughest he ever dealt with at a Grand Slam, as the tournament went on.
“Definitely, emotionally, the most challenging Grand Slam that I ever had, with everything that was happening — injury, off-the-court stuff, quarantines,” Djokovic said. “A roller-coaster ride.”
“I was quite worried,” Djokovic said about the injury. “I did not (think) realistically that I could actually play. I didn’t know until two hours before the fourth-round match.”
Dealing with what he called “bearable” pain, Djokovic improved to a combined 18-0 in semifinals and finals on Melbourne’s hard courts.
“Probably, it’s not your last one,” Medvedev said. “I have no words to say.”
Djokovic, a 33-year-old from Serbia, has won six of the last 10 majors and will stay ranked at No. 1 at least until March 8. That will give him 311 weeks, breaking another mark held by Federer.
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