Novak Djokovic has equalled Margaret Court’s all-time record by winning his 24th Grand Slam title at the 2023 US Open. He defeated Daniil Medvedev in straight sets, but the 6-3, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 scoreline hardly encapsulates the grueling battle that unfolded on the court. This triumph marks Djokovic’s fourth US Open title and sets him up for a chance to surpass Court’s record at January’s Australian Open.
by Janice McAllister
In an epic battle that defied the straight-set result, Novak Djokovic clinched his 24th Grand Slam title, matching a half-century-old record set by Margaret Court. The Serbian tennis star defeated Russia’s Daniil Medvedev in a demanding final that extended far beyond the 6-3, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 score at the US Open in New York.
Despite appearing physically drained in the arduous second set, Djokovic dug deep to showcase why he’s one of the sport’s greatest players. This win not only secures his fourth US Open title but also puts him on track to potentially break Court’s record in the upcoming Australian Open, a tournament he has dominated with ten previous titles.
“This victory is profoundly significant for me,” Djokovic expressed post-match. “Being able to compete at this level and chase history has always been a childhood dream. To actually live that dream is more than I ever hoped for.”
Earlier this year, Djokovic surpassed Rafael Nadal’s tally of 22 men’s major titles. His win today means he has now claimed three of the four Grand Slam titles of 2023, becoming the first man to achieve this distinction four times.
Djokovic, who will regain his world number one ranking on Monday, was all focus and precision from the get-go. An early break in the first set set the pace, leaving Medvedev struggling to catch up. Despite Medvedev’s improved play and resilience in the second set, Djokovic’s tactical brilliance and unyielding persistence saw him through.
“The second set was physically and emotionally draining, but my mindset was on pushing the boundaries of my game,” Djokovic stated. “There’s a little disappointment about not winning Wimbledon earlier this year, but the bigger picture is far more satisfying.”
The third set of the match heightened the sense of inevitability for the Russian player, who required medical attention for a shoulder issue. However, Djokovic was unyielding, breaking Medvedev’s serve and ultimately closing the match with his characteristic poise.
The Victory Lap:
After defeating Medvedev, Djokovic was visibly emotional, sharing an intimate moment with his family in the stands, which included his parents, wife Jelena, and children. Acknowledging his humble beginnings in Serbia during the 1990s, he said, “This trophy belongs as much to my family and team as it does to me. We defied the odds together.”
Djokovic also donned a T-shirt honoring the late NBA legend Kobe Bryant, a friend and mentor, whose jersey number was 24. “Kobe’s support and insights were invaluable to me, especially during the times I was injured or doubted myself,” Djokovic shared.
The tennis world has been in awe of Djokovic’s latest accomplishment. BBC’s Annabel Croft called the Serb “super-human,” while American ex-player Jeff Tarango marked the event as an “incredible moment” that we’re unlikely to see replicated.
From playing in empty swimming pools in Serbia to tying for the most Grand Slam wins ever, Djokovic’s journey has been nothing short of remarkable. As he stands on the brink of history, the tennis world watches in anticipation, wondering just how many more records this living legend will shatter.
(Associated Medias) – All rights reserved