Australian Open: Emotional Djokovic Hails 'Biggest Victory Of Life'

Novak Djokovic says winning a 10th Australian Open to equal Rafael Nadal's record 22 Grand Slam men's titles is "the biggest victory" of his life.

Djokovic, 35, beat Stefanos Tsitsipas in Melbourne having missed last year's event after being deported because of his Covid-19 vaccination status.

He also had to deal with a hamstring injury and a row involving his father.

"Only the team and the family knows what we have been through in the last four or five weeks," said the Serb.

"I would say this is probably the biggest victory of my life, considering those circumstances."

Djokovic was overcome with emotion after sealing a straight-win over Greek third seed Tsitsipas on Rod Laver Arena.

After climbing into the box to celebrate with his team and family, he broke into tears and laid down in the middle of them as the magnitude of his achievement hit home.

Djokovic continued sobbing under his towel when he returned to his chair on the court.

The win sees him return to world number one for a record-extending 374th week from Monday.

Twelve months ago, Djokovic was not allowed to play after being deported from Australia following the coronavirus saga which eventually led to his visa being revoked after a court case.

After being allowed back to play at Melbourne Park this year, he had to overcome more adversity.

The hamstring issue was particularly problematic in the earlier part of the tournament, with his coach Goran Ivanisevic saying "97% of the other players" would have withdrawn injured.

"If I turn back the time two and a half weeks ago, I wasn't really liking my chance in this tournament with the way I felt with my leg," said Djokovic.

"Then it was just a matter of survival of every single match, trying to take it to the next round.

"The good thing about the Grand Slam is you have a day between the matches, so it allowed me to have more time than normal to get myself in somewhat of a good state to play and eventually win."

Djokovic also had to deal with controversy surrounding his father Srdjan - who was photographed with supporters of Russian president Vladimir Putin - before Friday's semi-final against American Tommy Paul.



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