Australian Open 2023: Novak Djokovic defeats Stefanos Tsitsipas to win 10th title in Melbourne
Australian Open for the 10th time to equal Rafael Nadal’s record of 22 men’s Grand Slams singles titles.
The Serb beat Greek third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) on Sunday (January 29) in Melbourne Park, returning to the world number one ranking for the first time since last June.
After two hours and 56 minutes, Djokovic converted his third match point to further cement his reputation as one of the all-time tennis greats.
When Tsitsipas sent his backhand long, Djokovic pointed to his head and then his heart before walking calmly to the net to shake hands with his opponent.
But his emotions overcame him as he climbed up into the players’ box, crying openly as he was mobbed by his entourage with the tears continuing as he walked back to the court.
“I played my best tennis at Australian Open. Only the team and the family knows what we have been through in the last five, six weeks and I can say this is the biggest victory of my career.” – Novak Djokovic
Djokovic, without the heavy strapping on his left leg he wore for most of the tournament, had the excellent start on the court at Rod Laver Arena he knows so well.
Tsitsipas saved two break points in his opening service game, but he could not resist as Djokovic piled on the pressure to break for a 3-1 lead.
The 35-year-old dominated and went on to take the first set 6-3.
The atmosphere was like that of a football match at times with large Greek and Serbian contingents in the crowd, and Tsitsipas delighted the former by upping his game in the second set.
He brought up a set point on Djokovic’s serve, but the Serb saved it before forcing a tiebreak.
Both players struggled to win points on serve in the breaker, but it was Djokovic who took it 7-4 to leave himself one set from victory.