Djokovic hungry for more
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London - In the era of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, it is easy to downplay the achievements of Novak Djokovic until you glance at the names he left in his wake by claiming a ninth major title and third Wimbledon crown on Sunday.
Andre Agassi, Jimmy Connors, Ivan Lendl, Fred Perry and Ken Rosewall - names that trip off the tongue like a Who's Who of undisputed greats - all sit behind the Serb on tennis's honours board of grand slam champions.
Yet for so much of his career he has been mentioned in a second breath after the virtues of Federer and Nadal have been extolled.
It is only now, as Federer's ageing legs begin to creek and Nadal's battered body lets him down, that Djokovic is getting the recognition that his incredible talents deserve.
His largely dominant 7-6(1) 6-7(10) 6-4 6-3 victory over Federer showed that his current stranglehold on the men's game is tight and at 28 years old, there are many more miles in the tank.
“I feel good. I don't feel old. I have hopefully many more years in front of me,” he said.
“I'm going to try to push my own limits and see how far I can go really with titles and with myself playing on this high level.”
And let that be a warning to his rivals.
At no point in his near three hours of combat against Federer did he ever truly look in danger of ceding the Wimbledon title that he claimed in a far closer contest against the same player last year.
Even when Federer pinched the second set, it was because a large helping of good fortune came to his rescue with Djokovic passing up seven set points before the Swiss levelled the match.
After that, however, it was only going one way and Djokovic was in no time chewing on the Wimbledon turf in his now familiar celebration.
“I was assured that's it's gluten free, it's not processed, completely organic and natural,” the Serb quipped.
Djokovic stopped short of ranking his own position in tennis's historic pantheon of talents - that job was left to his beaten opponent, whose 17 slams mean, by numbers alone, he tops the tree.
“Novak played not only great today but the whole two weeks, plus the whole year, plus last year, plus the year before that. So he deserves it,” a magnanimous Federer told the crowd.
“He's clearly making a big name for himself, having won as many times now as he has in these different slams.
“I'm sure he still has many more great years ahead of him.”