Thursday February 18, 2021
Despite missing the final
Djokovic bows to Williams: “one of the greatest”
World number one Novak Djokovic bowed to Serena Williams and showed understanding for the burden of her record hunt.
“It is one of the greatest ever. I mean from all athletes, not just from tennis players, there is no doubt about that,” said the 33-year-old on Thursday at the Australian Open of tennis professionals in Melbourne: “I am proud and feel honored to play at the same time as her. To experience her greatness is fascinating. “
The 39-year-old Williams had previously been eliminated in the semifinals against the Japanese Naomi Osaka and had thus once again missed the chance of her 24th Grand Slam title. Since her victory in Australia in 2017, she has been chasing the Australian Margaret Court’s all-time record of 24 successes in the four most important tournaments.
“When you chase big things that relate to the history of the sport, of course it has a lot of weight, it brings a lot of pressure,” said Djokovic: “And no matter how many years you played on the tour and what experience you have you can still feel it on your shoulders. “
The Serbian world number one is fighting for the men’s record. With currently 17 Grand Slam titles, he is behind the Swiss Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal from Spain (20 each).