Djokovic quest for Slam record goes beyond Big Three

Sports | AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE 23 Feb 2021

Not content with challenging Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for the men's Grand Slam wins record, Novak Djokovic has Serena Williams and Margaret Court in his sights after claiming an astonishing ninth Australian Open tennis title.

The world No 1's bold statement followed his 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 humbling of Russian Daniil Medvedev in the final.

Djokovic's 18th Slam success put him within striking distance of the men's record of 20, jointly held by Federer and Nadal. But the Serb also raised the prospect of a bigger goal: reaching the 23 held by Williams, and even the 24 won by Court straddling the amateur and Open era.

"Getting closer to maybe Roger's, Rafa's record, Serena, Margaret," said Djokovic, when asked about his goals and schedule for this year.

"Everyone has their own journey and their own way of making history.

"I think about winning more Slams and breaking records. And most of my attention and my energy from this day forward is going to be directed in trying to win more Major trophies."

Djokovic, 33, is now guaranteed to surpass Federer's record of 310 weeks as world No 1 on March 8.

His Melbourne triumph follows a difficult tournament, after he suffered a muscle tear in the third round and was criticized for requesting better conditions for players during Covid-19 quarantine.

Djokovic admitted that a 'Big Three' rivalry with Federer, 39, and the 34-year-old Nadal has given him plenty of motivation.

"It's a competition between us in all areas. But I think that's the very reason why we are who we are, because we do drive each other, we motivate each other, we push each other to the limit."

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