Novak Djokovic claimed his 24th Grand Slam singles title at the 2023 US Open.
‘Age is just a number.’ Novak Djokovic proved the veracity of the overused adage once again by becoming the oldest man in the Open Era to lift the US Open trophy. The Serbian great outclassed Daniil Medvedev in the final to emerge victorious at the Flushing Meadows on Sunday. With the US Open triumph, Djokovic earned his 24th major singles title, the most by any tennis player in the Open Era. Djokovic also equaled Margaret Court’s record for most Grand Slam titles in the history of the game. Moreover, he overcame Serena Williams to appear as the first player to secure 24 titles in the Open era, which commenced in 1968.
Djokovic is 36 but there is no sign of the Serbian stopping anytime soon. But that does not mean Djokovic has not thought about his future. “Occasionally asking myself, why do I need this still at this stage after all I have done, you know? How long do I want to keep going? I do have these questions in my head, of course. Knowing that I play at such a high level still and I win the biggest tournaments in this sport, yeah, I don’t want to get rid of this sport or I don’t want to leave this sport if I’m still at the top,” Djokovic was quoted as saying.
Novak Djokovic had a chance of becoming just the sixth tennis player to complete a calendar Grand Slam in 2021. Daniil Medvedev denied Djokovic of that historic feat, having won the US Open title two years back. That defeat also shattered Djokovic’s dream of becoming the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to fulfill a calendar year Grand Slam.
Djokovic had a chance to avenge that loss this time and he embraced the opportunity wholeheartedly. Having lost in the Wimbledon final this year, Djokovic wanted to finish the Grand Slam calendar on a promising note in 2023. He needed a little over three hours to get the better of Daniil Medvedev. Despite missing out on his second Grand Slam title, Medvedev did not lose his sense of humour.
“I want to ask Novak, what are you still doing here?! When are you planning to slow down a little bit? I feel like I’ve not had a bad a career and I’ve won 20 titles, but you’ve won 24 Grand Slams – wow,” the Russian jokingly suggested after the US Open final.
With Rafael Nadal dealing with frequent injuries and Swiss maestro Roger Federer already retired, Djokovic’s future in the Grand Slam appears to be bright. But it will certainly not be devoid of any opposition. With the rise of talents like Ben Shelton and Carlos Alcaraz, Djokovic is expected to face tough competition from the young brigade.