Life could not be more perfect
for Novak Djokovic, professionally, domestically or
emotionally. Not only is the restored Wimbledon champion
a holder of a Grand Slam title again after three
disappointments in finals. He returns to the top of the
Emirates ATP World Tour rankings after eight months
behind Rafael Nadal and has qualified to defend his
title at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in November.
Add to that Djokovic will marry
his long-time girlfriend Jelena Ristic on Thursday and
the couple are expecting their first child in the fall.
All in all good reason for celebrations that began with
Djokovic eating a mouthful of the All England Club’s
hallowed Centre Court grass, continued at the Champion’s
Dinner held in the glittering surroundings of the Royal
Opera House in London’s West End and then progressed
into the night.
Djokovic was scheduled to fly
back to Serbia for another bachelor party with his
brothers and friends today but in front of an A list
band of British royalty and worldwide celebrities
including The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Samuel L
Jackson, Kate Winslett, Hugh Jackman, Kate Beckinsale,
Orlando Bloom and Bradley Cooper as well as David and
Victoria Beckham, he dedicated the trophy to his future
wife and baby as well as his late coach Jelena Gencic who
died just over 13 months ago.
As he accepted the trophy, a
tearful Djokovic was noticeably more emotional than he
had been for any of his previous six Grand Slam titles.
“I was just overwhelmed with the positive emotions that
I was experiencing in the match,” said the 6-7, 6-4,
7-6, 5-7, 6-4 winner over Roger Federer. “I was
not surprised, I was just trying to enjoy the moment,
rethink what I've been through during the match.”
And Djokovic was insistent he
had been part of a very special tennis match.
“Sincerely, this has been the best quality Grand Slam
final that I ever been part of,” he maintained. “I've
had a longest final against Nadal in the Australian Open
2012. But quality-wise from the first to last point,
this is definitely the best match.
“Roger played very well, I
thought, in a very high level. He showed why he's
a champion. He showed a fighting spirit, composure
in important moments when he was a break down. When I
was serving for the match, he came in and played his
best game. I didn't think I did much wrong there.
“What was disappointing was
losing the fourth set after being so close to win it and
match point. But the only way I could have won the
match was by believing that I could make it all the way
until the end and staying mentally strong. That's
what I've done.”
And Djokovic harped back to the
disappointment he felt losing to Nadal in the French
Open final a month earlier. “I didn't allow my emotions
to fade away, as it was probably the case in Roland
Garros final a couple, three, four weeks ago,” he said.
Much of the focus on Djokovic’s
second Wimbledon title fell on his coach Boris Becker,
employed to restore the big match temperament and
provide that extra percentage to allow him to again be
victorious over the game’s very elite.
But Becker insisted: “Novak was
the one who did it. I can talk about it with him as much
as we like off the court. He can read as many books and
talk to as many psychologists as he wants but at the end
of the day it’s up to him and how he fights those inner
“My role has been talked about
enough already and I’d like to think I know a lot about
tennis in general, not only pressure moments. It’s up to
the individual to find an inner voice when it matters
the most and that’s what he did.”
Becker continued to give an
insight of the pressure Djokovic was feeling after three
successive major final disappointments in last year’s
Wimbledon and US Opens as well as the French a month
earlier. ““These guys go through hell out there in front
of a million eyes,” he insisted.
“I’m the first to understand
that when you are an emotional guy like Novak, it’s not
always possible to keep your emotions perfectly in
check. Yet he lives by his feelings and needs to be
emotional to play well. It’s tough to find that fine
line; what is enough and what’s not. So he has to be
himself and find a way to win on his own. I can only
tell him so much and if he does lift the trophy it’s
because of him and nobody else.”