Tennis in the decade of 2000s was more about Federer and Nadal. The two superstars would generally sweep through most of the important tournaments. Since 2011, another great champion realized his potential and started dominating ATP tennis. Serbia’s Novak Djokovic has truly been the player of the last decade in the men’s game. From Grand Slam victories to dominating Masters 1000s and emerging as the world’s number 1, he has done it all more than any rival in the game in the last ten years. Here is how the Serb superstar managed to turn his game around and take his career several notches up.
Novak Djokovic: Consistency and Belief
Novak Djokovic started playing with more aggression, control, and consistency since 2011. It was in the same year that he dominated all his great rivals in ATP tennis. The list even included his great rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. He won three Grand Slams and five Master 1000 titles that year. Novak Djokovic also managed to top the ATP tennis singles rankings for the first time by becoming the world’s number 1 that year. He was the first Serbian male player to do so.
Since that year, the 17 times Grand Slam champ has never looked back. He was won 16 of those majors in the last ten years and truly dominated ATP tennis. He has beaten Nadal on the clay of Roland Garros and Roger Federer in 3 Wimbledon finals. It has powered the great Serb to become one of the legends of the sport and truly the best player of the last decade. With already closing in on Federer’s weeks at the world’s number 1 and singles Grand Slam record, Novak Djokovic may finish as the greatest male tennis player by the time he retires from the game.
Fitness and Fortitude
One of the best qualities that helped Novak Djokovic to dominate ATP tennis is the extreme focus on fitness and diet. Before 2010, he used to retire from many of the important matches due to issues like exhaustion and allergies. However, in the last ten years, the Serbian great has rarely retired from matches. He has been involved in some of the most enduring and exhausting five-set contests like the 2019 Wimbledon final, 2013 French Open semis, and the 2012 Australian Open final.
The final of 2012 Australian Open was the longest of any ATP tennis Grand Slams. It lasted for five hours and 53 minutes, and Novak Djokovic was up against one of the greatest competitors in the game, Rafael Nadal. He didn’t give up even after a break in the final set to come back and lift the trophy. It was a great testimony to his great desire to excel in the game.
Djokovic is currently ranked as the world’s number 1 in the ATP tennis rankings. His great career still awaits many important milestones. His unmatched tennis records like the Golden Masters and holding all four slams at the same time have made him one of the true greats of the game. In both physical fitness and mental endurance, Novak Djokovic has successfully overcome all odds to create an impeccable tennis career.