Jul 6, 2023, 5:37 pm ET in Tennis
Read Time: 5 min

Novak Djokovic: The True-Blue GOAT of Tennis

US Open, September 2011. The air is electric, the crowd’s anticipation palpable. Djokovic in Wimbledon prowess still fresh in memories, it’s once again tennis titan Roger Federer against the rising star Novak Djokovic. Both are keen for a face-off with Rafael Nadal, who’s waiting in the wings.

At 5-3, 40-15, it seems Federer’s about to get his wish. The crowd is wild with excitement. But Djokovic isn’t fazed. He steps up to the plate, Federer serves at 108 mph, and then…wham! Djokovic returned with an extraordinary forehand winner, leaving Federer off-balance and the spectators in shock. Tennis legend John McEnroe described it as “one of the all-time great shots”.

And that’s just the beginning of the Novak Djokovic story, the truer-than-true G.O.A.T. of tennis.

The Djokovic Dominance

Djokovic’s first big win came in 2008 at the Australian Open, where he defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. He has since made tennis history, with records in each of the four major tournaments: 10 wins in Australia, three in France, three in the US, and seven in Wimbledon.

Moreover, he is the only man to win all four majors at least three times. The cherry on top? He achieved this in both his 20s and 30s, a feat no other male player in the Open Era has managed, except Rod Laver.

The year 2011 was Djokovic’s year. After being in only three major finals in six years, he turned the tables by scooping up three out of four grand slams, with Federer halting him only at the French Open semifinals. Since then, Djokovic has been a powerhouse on the court, securing a record 23 major singles titles, more than any man in the Open Era.

Djokovic’s latest win was at the French Open, where he outplayed Casper Ruud to bag his 23rd singles title at the four majors – the Australian Open, Wimbledon, US Open, and Roland-Garros. This tally is unparalleled among male players, leaving rivals Nadal and Federer in the rearview with 22 and 20 titles respectively. Even the retired legend Pete Sampras, with 14 major titles, doesn’t come close.

The Quest for the Grand Slam

Despite his impressive list of accomplishments, one goal remains elusive for Djokovic – the calendar Grand Slam, where all four majors are won in a single year. The last person to achieve this was Laver, back in 1969. Djokovic came tantalizingly close in 2021, winning in Australia, Paris, and Wimbledon, before falling to Daniil Medvedev in New York. Could 2023 be the year?


Player Odds
Novak Djokovic -188
Carlos Alcaraz +240
Daniil Medvedev +1400
Jannik Sinner +1600
Taylor Fritz +3300
Alexander Zverev +3300
Andy Murray +4000
Andrey Rublev +5000
Holger Rune +5000
Stefanos Tsitsipas +5000
Alexander Bublik +6600
Alex De Minaur +6600
Hubert Hurkacz +6600
Frances Tiafoe +6600
Cameron Norrie +6600
Casper Ruud +8000
Grigor Dimitrov +8000
Denis Shapovalov +10000
Matteo Berrettini +12500
Tommy Paul +15000
Marton Fucsovics +20000
David Goffin +20000
Nicolas Jarry +20000
Ben Shelton +25000
Francisco Cerundolo +30000
Lorenzo Musetti +30000
Christopher O’Connell +35000
Lorenzo Sonego +35000
J.J. Wolf +40000
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina +40000
Botic Van De Zandshulp +40000
Adrian Mannarino +45000
Milos Raonic +45000
Stan Wawrinka +45000

Clash of the Titans: Djokovic, Federer, Nadal

We’ve been treated to the sensational skill-show of three legendary players, namely Djokovic, Federer, and Nadal. They are universally considered the best in the business. Let’s take a closer look at how they stack up against each other, with Djokovic currently leading the pack.

Player A Wins Player B
Novak Djokovic 30-29 Rafael Nadal
Novak Djokovic 27-23 Roger Federer
Rafael Nadal 24-16 Roger Federer

Djokovic vs Nadal: An Epic Rivalry

Last year’s dramatic showdown at the 2022 French Open quarterfinals saw Nadal clinch victory over Djokovic. This unforgettable match could potentially be their last face-off, given Nadal’s struggles with injury. Over nearly two decades, their rivalry has kept tennis fans on the edge of their seats.

When we crunch the numbers, Djokovic emerges as the victor in their head-to-head record, having beaten Nadal in 30 out of the 59 Tour-level matches they’ve battled in1. Djokovic also holds the unique distinction of defeating Nadal multiple times at the French Open.

Djokovic vs Federer: Clash of Champions

The Djokovic-Federer rivalry is no less thrilling. They’ve crossed rackets 50 times, and Djokovic in Wimbledon has been the last man standing in 27 of these encounters. The 2019 Wimbledon final was a match for the ages. Back in March 2021, he broke Federer’s record, having held the No.1 spot in the world’s men’s tennis for a whopping 311 weeks.

World’s Top in 12 Different Years

Fast forward to today: Djokovic in Wimbledon and other important events record sits at an astounding 389 weeks, impacting tennis odds significantly. He’s been the world’s top player in 12 different years – a feat that no other player has achieved. He has also claimed the title of the world’s most successful player in a single season seven times, yet another record to his name.

Djokovic is currently ahead, but who knows what the fickle future might hold for this tennis legend.

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