Not content material with difficult Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for the males’s Grand Slams document, Novak Djokovic has Serena Williams and Margaret Court in his sights after claiming an astonishing ninth Australian Open title.
The world primary’s daring assertion adopted Sunday’s ultimate, when he ended a turbulent match marked by a muscle damage and media assaults by humbling an in-form Daniil Medvedev.
Djokovic’s 18th main crown positioned him inside hanging distance of the males’s document of 20, collectively held by Nadal, who misplaced in the quarter-finals, and Federer, who was absent by means of damage.
But the Serb additionally raised the prospect of a much bigger purpose: reaching the 23 held by Williams, and even the 24 received by Court straddling the newbie and Open period.
“Getting nearer to perhaps Roger’s, Rafa’s document, Serena, Margaret,” stated Djokovic, when requested about his targets and schedule for this yr.
“Everyone has their very own journey and their very own means of creating historical past. They’ve made historical past already. They made an incredible mark in our sport.
“I take into consideration successful extra Slams and breaking information, in fact. And most of my consideration and my power from this present day ahead, till I retire from tennis, goes to be directed in majors, attempting to win extra main trophies.”
Djokovic, 33, stated he would play a slimmed-down schedule focusing on the majors, relatively than the rankings, now he is assured to surpass Federer’s document of 310 weeks as world primary on March 8.
– ‘Three knights of tennis’ –
His triumph follows a tough match, after he suffered a muscle tear in the third spherical and was criticised for requesting higher situations for gamers throughout quarantine.
“It hurts,” he stated of the criticism. “I’m a human being. I’ve feelings.”
The Serb’s 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 win over the 25-year-old Medvedev, who was on a 20-match successful streak, was additionally a sobering second for the youthful gamers hoping to dislodge the ‘Big Three’.
“The three knights of tennis,” Djokovic smiled.
“Roger and Rafa encourage me,” he added. “I feel so long as they go, I’ll go. In a means it is like a race who performs tennis extra and who wins extra.
“It’s a contest between us in all areas. But I feel that is the very motive why we’re who we’re, as a result of we do drive one another, we inspire one another, we push one another to the restrict.”
Djokovic’s coach Goran Ivanisevic stated the Big Three had been producing “higher and higher tennis” and in addition famous that Court’s document was on the horizon.
“I do not know the place is the finish. Maybe they are going to overtake Margaret Court and Serena, perhaps not,” he stated.
“But it is superb what they doing on the courtroom. It’s superb how they carry out in the large matches.”
And Djokovic, dubbed the “king of Melbourne” by Medvedev, had a warning for the technology developing behind the Big Three.
“Roger, Rafa, myself are nonetheless there for a motive,” he stated. “We do not need to hand it to them and we do not need to permit them to win Slams.
“I feel that is one thing that could be very clear. Whether you talk that message or not, we’re undoubtedly sending that vibe on the market.”
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