Novak Djokovic beat Daniil Medvedev to win the US Open men’s final, extending his record of Grand Slam titles to 24.



CNN

Novak Djokovic He won the US Open on Sunday, beating Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 7-6, 6-3 in the men’s final, extending his record for most Grand Slam titles to 24.

The world number two has cemented himself as one of the greatest tennis players of all time – with a win on Sunday, he equals Margaret Court’s record for the most Grand Slam titles ever.

In a rematch of the 2021 US Open final, the Serb avenged his loss to No. 3 seed Medvedev at Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York to complete his triumphant return to the United States.

“Obviously this means the world to me,” Djokovic said after the match. “I am truly living my childhood dream of competing at the highest level in this sport that has given me and my family so much.”

Playing in front of a sellout crowd, Djokovic was at his usual dominant level in the first set, never facing a break point, while notching 12 winners in nine matches. Entering tonight, Djokovic had an all-time record of 72-1 at the US Open when he won the first set, his only loss coming to Stan Wawrinka in the 2016 final.

The second set proved to be more competitive, with Djokovic and Medvedev trading games back and forth, culminating in a 7-5 victory for the Serb in a tie-break after an hour and 45 minutes.

From there, with the momentum in his favor and his fourth US Open title within one set, Djokovic cruised to victory, needing just one championship point to clinch the historic title.

Charles Krupa/AP

Serbian Novak Djokovic’s reaction after his victory in the second set over Russian Daniil Medvedev.

With the win, the 36-year-old became the oldest player to win a US Open singles title in the Open Era and the first man to win three Grand Slam titles in a season for the fourth time – he had previously done so in 2011, 2015 and 2015. 2021.

Djokovic also strengthened his superiority over Spain’s Rafael Nadal (22) and Swiss Roger Federer (20) in the number of men’s singles titles ever.

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“Making the history of this sport something wonderful and special in every possible sense of the word,” Djokovic said.

Djokovic said during a post-match press conference that Djokovic’s 6-year-old daughter was sitting in the front row during the match, and he told reporters that she would smile at him when he needed her energy most.

He said it was important to him that his daughter — as well as his 9-year-old son — experience their father’s victory when they were old enough to understand victory.

Regarding what motivates him to continue, Djokovic said: “I do not want to leave the sport if I am still playing at the top.”

After his victory, an emotional Djokovic got down on his hands and knees for a few moments before turning to his family in the stands to celebrate.

Upon his return to the court, Djokovic honored the late basketball star Kobe Bryant, by changing his blue shirt, which bore a picture of him and the Lakers legend with the phrase “Mamba Forever” emblazoned on the front, and the number on the back. Bryant wore number 24 for the second half of his professional basketball career.

“I thought it might be a nice, symbolic thing to acknowledge him,” said Djokovic, who considers Bryant a close friend.

“We talked a lot about the winner’s mentality when I was going through injury and trying to get back to the top of the game,” Djokovic said of his relationship with Bryant. “He was one of the people I relied on the most. He was always there for any kind of advice, advice or any kind of support in the most friendly way.

Mary Altaffer/AFP

Fans cheer during the men’s singles final at the US Open.

in every Major Slams this year, Djokovic He had the opportunity to make history.

He equaled Rafael Nadal’s record of 22 Grand Slam titles at the Australian Open, tied the men’s record of 23 Grand Slam titles at the French Open, and lost to Carlos Alcaraz at the Australian Open. Wimbledon last.

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Standing in his way Sunday is third seed Daniil Medvedev, who stunned Alcaraz in the semifinals and who defeated Djokovic in the US Open final before, in straight sets.

Although Medvedev’s game is still well suited to fast hard courts, he expected Djokovic to be “ten times better than he was that day.”

“Against Novak, it’s the same thing. He’s always better than the last time he played,” Medvedev said, according to the ATP. “For example, I beat him in the US Open final, he beat me in Bercy in Great match. Carlos beat him at Wimbledon, and he beat him in Cincinnati. “Novak will be the best version of himself on Sunday, and I have to be the best version of myself I can be if I want to try to beat him.”

Djokovic has not been vaccinated against the Corona virus and has not been able to enter the country for the past two years. However, vaccine requirements for non-US travelers were lifted earlier this year, enabling Djokovic to return.

The Serbian will have a chance to cross the court and etch his name as the all-time winningest player at the Australian Open in January 2024.

When Djokovic and Medvedev last met in a Grand Slam final, it was the Russian who upended expectations and thwarted Djokovic’s bid to win a then-record 24 Slams and complete his first men’s Grand Slam – winning the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open in the same breath. The year – since Rod Laver in 1969.

Since winning his first Grand Slam title at the US Open in 2021, Medvedev has come close to winning again, taking a two-set lead in the 2022 Australian Open final against Nadal, but ultimately succumbed to defeat.

Tim Clayton/Corbis/Getty Images

Daniil Medvedev won the US Open in 2021.

He said: “The challenge is to play against a man who has won 23 Grand Slam titles, and I only have one title.” He added, “When I beat him here (in the 2021 final), I was able to play better than myself, and I need to do it again.” There is no other way.”

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At 36, Djokovic could become the oldest man to win a US Open singles title in the Open Era, surpassing the record set by Ken Rosewall in 1970.

“Every Grand Slam final could be the last,” he told reporters before the final. “Ten years ago, I felt like saying to myself: I still have a few more years ahead of me.” I don’t know how much I have now, or how many years I’ve had [can] He played four slam dunks the entire season. So I am aware of this occasion.

It will be Djokovic’s 101st match at the US Open, a tournament he has already won three times in his career, but not since 2018.

Djokovic had a relatively clear run to the final and, apart from surviving a scare in the third round when he found himself two sets behind compatriot Laslo Dijri, he completed every other match in just three sets, reducing his court time as he did. The competition was swept aside.

It marks an impressive end to a year in which he reached the final of all four Grand Slams, adding two more titles to his collection, after a 2022 year in which he was unable to compete in Australia or the United States due to his decision not to vaccinate against him. Covid-19.

For Medvedev, the US Open finalist had an impressive hard court season, reaching five consecutive hard court finals and winning four titles.

His performance against Alcaraz in the semifinals showcased his strong serve, shooting and tenacity, all of which made him a tough opponent for Djokovic.

Medvedev said: “You want to fight to the end, and you want to win.” “And that’s what it should be like in a Grand Slam final.”

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