Novak Djokovic’s Dominance in Tennis: Records Broken and the Quest for More

Novak Djokovic’s Dominance in Tennis: Records Broken and the Quest for More

Novak Djokovic and the tennis world woke up Monday morning with a sense of déjà vu.

He is entering the 390th week of his career on the throne, the equivalent of seven and a half years, another record. He now holds a lead of around 3,200 points over his closest pursuer, Carlos Alcaraz. In short, the clock will continue to tick for at least the next few weeks and he could increase his lead over the other two members of the Big 3.

Rafael Nadal is still at 22 major titles, while Roger Federer has put away his racket for good at 20. Djoko’s avarice could now allow him to overtake Margaret Court, the only other athlete to have won 24 major singles titles.

Djokovic’s victory on Sunday evening was never in doubt, except, perhaps, during the second round, when the Russian Daniil Medvedev managed to considerably lengthen the rallies.

The Serb seemed to be struggling, but history is littered with examples of matches during which Djokovic seemed to be on life support before resurrecting like the Undertaker. On Sunday, Medvedev knew it.

Those who horrified the exuberant suffering sometimes displayed by the master knew this too.

Open in full screen mode

Djokovic defeated Medvedev in three sets.

Photo : Getty Images / Clive Brunskill

By winning the second round, the Serb, like a hungry shark, had just come across a few drops of blood…

He was tired and he missed shots at the end of long rallies, Medvedev said at a press briefing after his defeat. That said, it’s Novak. No matter what happens, he’s still there. It’s a shame to have lost the second round because I dominated him. I should have played better and changed my position on return of serve. I was stubborn.

Read more:  [자막뉴스] "Another new type of discovery"... U.S., an unusual sign?

If Medvedev remained very far behind the baseline, true to his habit, it is because he believed he was capable of winning from there, as he had done in the semi-final during his brilliant victory against Carlos Alcaraz.

Still, the Russian knew that Djokovic would adapt, after all, he has done it his entire career.

And on Sunday, Djokovic had his defeat in the 2021 US Open final to avenge, the one that had prevented him from winning all four grand slams in the same year, something no player has achieved since Rod Laver in 1969.

Open in full screen mode

Noavk Djokovic first in the world and highest total of grand slam victories (23).

Photo: afp via getty images / EMMANUEL DUNAND

For Djokovic, learning lessons sometimes means changing your approach, even those that work. This is the case for his physical preparation, but also mental.

The biggest lesson learned in my career is that even when you find the formula that works, there is no guarantee that it will work again and probably won’t work the following year. You have to constantly reinvent yourself because everyone else is doing it. I need to do it even more at 36 to allow my body to stay healthy and to recover well to maintain the highest possible level.

Djokovic is not about to lose this desire to reinvent himself. Smiling, his coach, Goran Ivanisevic, said the Serbian intended to play until the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics.

No question, according to the coach, of leaving the sport at the top after a hypothetical 25th grand slam title obtained next year.

Read more:  Adrien Rabiot Interview: Allegri, Champions League, and Thiago Motta - Dazn Heroes

Djokovic said with a laugh that he would leave the circuit in 23 or 24 years, no less. But more seriously, he doesn’t know how many good seasons he has left in his legs.

Open in full screen mode

Goran Ivanisevic at the 2023 US Open

Photo : Getty Images / Clive Brunskill

He’s always hungry, he wants to break more records and he can do it because he plays incredible tennis, said Ivanisevic, himself a former Wimbledon champion. He was born with this extraordinary desire to win which cannot be taught. He is a genius, an exceptional player. He was lucky to be preceded by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal who pushed him to be better.

The worst thing to do is to tell him that he cannot do something because he will want to prove otherwise, Ivanisevic continues. He likes challenges. If he wins a 25th grand slam title, he will wonder why not a 26th? He always wants more, he is always dissatisfied on the pitch and this quest for perfection leads to extraordinary results.

If meeting Djokovic up close is a privilege, in the good moments at least, the exercise is no less trying for his team, admitted Ivanisevic. This inexhaustible desire for victory does not come without squeaks.

The Joker’s priority will remain the grand slam tournaments and he will continue to lighten his schedule so as not to wear out too much.

By staying fresh, he maximizes his chances of success in major tournaments and the emotions felt during triumphs motivate him to continue. Thus turns the spinning wheel.

Read more:  Covid-19: the significant decline in temporary work in 2020 is alarming -

Of course, sometimes I wonder why I still need all this after everything I have accomplished and for how much longer I will continue, Djokovic asked at a press briefing on Sunday. When I see that I can play at such a level and win the biggest tournaments, I definitely don’t want to leave the sport when I’m still at the top, especially if I still play the same way.

He also never hid the fact that another important decoration was missing from his list of achievements: the Olympic gold medal.

Djokovic has never been able to win in four appearances at the Games. He obtained his best result in Beijing in 2008, with a bronze medal.

Open in full screen mode

Novak Djokovic

Photo : Getty Images / Leon Neal

In Tokyo, three years ago, the Serbian lost in the semi-finals to the German Alexander Zverev, then to the Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta, to everyone’s surprise, during the match for the bronze medal.

He was also excluded from the podium in London in 2012, and was even knocked out in the first round in Rio in 2016.

The opportunity will be great next summer, on the ocher of Roland-Garros, where he also triumphed in June, to attach gold to his unrivaled record. Enough to keep him motivated for a few more months.

So, to answer the original question, Novak Djokovic can go as far as he wants or, at least, as his body will allow him to go.

Between the two ears, the limits still seem far from being reached.

2023-09-11 20:58:37
#Djokovic #limits

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Recent News

Editor's Pick