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Australian Open: Love affair with Melbourne keeps growing, says Novak Djokovic after 18th Grand Slam victory

Australian Open 2021: Novak Djokovic extended his perfect record as the Australian Open final as he went on to win his 9th Grand Slam crown at Melbourne Park. It was also Djokovic’s 18th Grand Slam title.

Australian Open 2021: Novak Djokovic’s ‘love affair’ with Melbourne continues to grow (Reuters Photo)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Novak Djokovic extended his perfect record in Australian Open finals enroute to 9th crown
  • Djokovic took his Grand Slam tally to 18, 2 behind Federer and Nadal’s joint record
  • Rod Laver Arena, I love you each year more and more: Djokovic

Novak Djokovic is the King of Melbourne yet again! The World No. 1 won a record-extending 9th title at the Australian Open when he played ‘scarily’ good tennis to beat 4th seed Daniil Medvedev in straight sets in an hour and 53 minutes at the Melbourne Park in the men’s singles final.

No one has performed better than Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open as the Serb extended his perfect record in the final at Rod Laver Arena. Djokovic has stretched his record at the Australian Open to 82-8. It may not look as threatening as Rafael Nadal’s 100-2 at the Roland Garros but to say Djokovic has been consistent in Melbourne is an understatement. This was also the 2nd time he completed a hat-trick of titles at the Australian Open.

Speaking after taking the Australian Open title without breaking a sweat, Djokovic thanked the Melbourne Park crowd and highlighted that his love affair with the city is only growing.

“Rod Laver Arena, I love you each year more and more. The love affair keeps going. Thank you so much. It has been a rollercoaster week for me. I am eternally grateful to my team for all their support and energy. I love you guys,” Djokovic said.

Australian Open 2021, Men’s singles final: Highlights

It was not an easy week for Djokovic as he was complaining about the 14-day mandatory quarantine period in the lead-up to the Australian Open. Djokovic said he was struggling with a back injury and threatened to exit the tournament in the fourth round when he conceded 2 sets against Taylor Fritz in the 3rd round.

Djokovic thanked the organisers of the Australian Open, saying they have done a fine job in pulling off the season’s first Grand Slam in the wake of the pandemic.

“There are a lot of mixed feeling about what has happened in the last month or so with tennis players coming to Australia but I think when we draw a line at the end it was a successful tournament.

“It wasn’t easy but I think they should be proud of themselves for what they have put together and allowed us to come here.”

You will hold a Grand Slam sooner than later: Djokovic to Medvedev

Djokovic also had words of praise for his opponent on Sunday, Daniil Medvedev who played his second Grand Slam final. The Serb said he is confident that Medvedev is not far away from winning his maiden major title but jokingly asked if he was okay waiting for a couple more years.

Djokovic has won 18 Grand Slam titles and is just 2 away from matching the joint-record of 20 major titles held by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

“I really like him as a person off the court. On the court, he’s definitely one of the toughest players I ever faced in my life. It’s a matter of time that you will hold a Grand Slam for sure – if you don’t mind waiting a few more years,” Djokovic said.

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