Novak Djokovic won Wimbledon this past weekend, thrusting him into a tie with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for the most Grand Slam titles overall – they each have 20 major titles.
Several years ago, he wasn’t even in the “best” conversation. It was a two-horse race for the win, and Djokovic was there for show.
He always had talent, but came up a bit short of greatness early in his career. He was 6-7 in his first 13 Grand Slam finals… not too shabby, but not exactly G.O.A.T. material either. But in his last 17 Grand Slam finals matches, “The Joker” is 14-3. He knew that to beat Federer and Nadal, he’d have to get better across the board – as he mentioned in his post-Wimbledon interview:
“Iron sharpens iron” is the old adage. Kudos to Novak for sharpening his sword – not just physically, but mentally and tactically as well. That’s what makes a true champion.
It’s also worth noting that Djokovic is the only man ever to win every Grand Slam at least twice. And he’s 27-23 all-time against Federer and 30-28 against Nadal. And back in March, he also passed Federer’s record of most weeks at No. 1 with 311.
Tennis is a young person’s sport, and Djokovic is 34. Father Time catches up with everyone eventually. But here’s hoping The Joker has a few more tricks up his sleeve.