Djokovic Dominates Medvedev 6-3, 7-6(5), 6-3 to Claim His 24th Major Title, Equaling Margaret Court’s Record for the Most Grand Slam Singles Championships in Tennis History.
In 2021, Novak Djokovic had stood at the same iconic Arthur Ashe Stadium, at the end of three-setter final against Daniil Medvedev, all teared up. The Serb was aiming to become the first male player since Rod Laver in 1969 to script a Calendar Grand Slam, and the pressure of elite feat had gotten the better of him allowing the Russian to claim his maiden major title. Two years later, after having missed the 2022 edition owing to being denied entry into the States over his stance on Covid vaccination which stood in contrast to the rules of the US government, Djokovic avenged his loss to Medvedev. On Sunday evening in New York, in front of a packed crowd at the Flushing Meadows, Djokovic decimated the 27-year-old 6-3, 7-6(5), 6-3 for his 24th major title, one major singles title more than the legendary Serena Williams to become the first player to the feat in Open era, which began in 1968. Margaret Court also collected a total of 24, but 13 of those came before professionals were admitted to the Slam events. It was also his fourth US Open title and first in New York since 2018.
Djokovic fought back and won the game
Although Djokovic showed signs of fatigue during the match, and was seen collapsing to the ground as well at the end of one of those long rallies, he did what he does best – find a way to fight back and win. The man, who will officially rise to the world No. 1 spot on Monday, claimed an intense 104-minute second set, where he saved a set point and later secured the trophy.
Two months back, at his most favourite venue, Djokovic had incurred a heartbreaking loss in the Wimbledon final against Carlos Alcaraz, going down in five sets to be denied that 24th Major. He then went on a long break, where he spent his time off with his family on a vacation, before returning to action on a thundering note. He avenged his loss to Alcaraz in the Cincinnati final and continued his sublime form to script a 12-match unbeaten streak since then/ The 96-time tour-level titlist has now lifted three majors in a season four times (also 2011, 2015 and 2021) in his career.
Djokovic had gained an early control in the match on Sunday, breaking in the first return game to surge to a 3-0 lead and unlike Alcaraz on Friday, he did not force himself too forward against the world No. 3 and rather relied on serve-and-volley strategy to make the most of Medvedev’s deep return position. Five time he resolved to the tactic in the opening set, winning four times.
In the second set, which had the real drama, espcially after being locked at 3-3, a fatigued Djokovic sought to shorten the points with avergae rally length being 6.5 until then with Medvedev having the edge (26-18) in rallies of more than nine shots. Djokovic approached the net more often, used more drop shots, yet Medvedev dragged out rallies hinting at a comeback in the match. He later held a set point as well before falling behind by two sets.
There was still a glimmer of hope when Medvedev earned the break back right after being broken early in the third set, but failed to capitalise on it. Djokovic offered no further opportunities and held serve throughout to claim his fourth US Open title.
Disclaimer: Except the headline and synopsis, this story has been taken from the HT News Service.