The Serbian won his seventh Wimbledon title after four hard-fought sets on Centre Court
Novak Djokovic won his fourth Wimbledon title and seventh overall on Sunday, defeating ace-delivering, trick-shot-hitting Nick Kyrgios 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (3).
“It’s weird. I felt like he didn’t do anything amazing today,” The unseeded Kyrgios made the judgement, which some may disagree with considering Djokovic’s 31 wins and eight unforced errors across the last two sets despite facing zero break points.
“But he was just so composed. That’s what I was just thinking to myself. In big moments, it just felt like he was never rattled. I feel like that’s his greatest strength: He just never looks rattled,” Kyrgios, about whom such statements were very certainly not said, stated
“He just looks completely within himself the whole time. Didn’t look like he was playing over-aggressive, even though it felt like he was playing big.”
Only Roger Federer has won more Wimbledon titles than Djokovic, with eight, and only Rafael Nadal has more major trophies, with 22.
“The more you win, it’s logical, the more confident, the more comfortable you feel out there every next time you step out on the court,” said top seed Djokovic, who was pleased to hear some Centre Court spectators chanting his nickname, “No-le! No-le!” as he served the last point of a well fought tiebreaker.
As of now, Djokovic will be unable to catch Nadal by winning the US Open, which begins in late August; the 35-year-old Serbian is unable to enter the country because he chose not to compete in COVID-19, the same reason he missed the Australian Open in January.
“I’m not vaccinated,” Djokovic said Sunday, “and I’m not planning to get vaccinated.”
Apart from his experience (32 Grand Slam finals to Kyrgios’ one), his skill and clutch genes showed in the last tiebreaker, and all of those attributes were there for two very important games that helped swing the match.
Djokovic referred to them as “key moments.”
In those games, Djokovic kept his cool while Kyrgios blinked. And there were games that Kyrgios refused to give up, like running monologues, shouting at himself or his entourage (which does not include a full-time coach), receiving a cursing warning, finding a reason to object with the chair umpire, who he fist-bumped before the match, and chucking a water bottle.
Kyrgios got to love-40 with Djokovic serving for the second set at 5-3, giving him three break points. However, Kyrgios made a couple of careless returns, and Djokovic eventually held.
After that set, Kyrgios waved dismissively toward his box, sat down, and dropped his racket to the turf, before grousing to no one in particular:
“It was love-40! Can it get any bigger or what?! Is that big enough for you?!” Djokovic took notice.
“He knew on this stage, when Nick starts to talk, he’s going to be vulnerable,” said Djokovic’s coach, 2001 Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic. “That happened.”
In the third set, with Kyrgios serving at 4-all, 40-love, he let another seemingly sealed game slip away, and Djokovic broke.
“It was a huge momentum shift,” said Djokovic. “because up to that point we were quite even.” Kyrgios was nearly perfect in the first set, hitting 11 winners before making his second unforced error.
Djokovic held the trophy on Sunday, as he has so many times before. He trailed in the final, as he had in the quarterfinals (when he trailed by two sets) and semifinals.
Just as he did in the French Open and Wimbledon finals last year. He faced two championship points against Federer, just as he did in the 2019 final at the All England Club.
He waited for the moment to grab control each time. He was always victorious.
“So the streak continues,” Djokovic said after his unbeaten streak at Wimbledon reached 28 wins. “Without a doubt, I feel very connected to this court and this tournament.”