It was a slow start for Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final today. The Serb was the heavy favorite against first-time Slam semifinalist Cameron Norrie.
But the British No. 1 got the crowd involved early and jumped out to a quick 6-2 lead. Playing some of his best tennis, the lefty was causing issues for the World No. 1. At 3-4, though, Norrie would brick an easy volley. Points later Djokovic would break and never look back.
The 6-time champion would ride his serve to a 2-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 win. His 7th straight Grand Slam semifinal win.
“I didn’t start off well. He was the better player for the first set. I have had many semi-finals at Grand Slams before, but it is never easy walking out onto court,” Djokovic told the crowd. “You have a lot of pressure and expectation from yourself and others. Cameron didn’t have much to lose, he is playing the tournament of his life. Playing at home is never easy, but I wish him all the best. He is a great player and I have a lot of respect for him.
“It was very hot today. The hottest day of The Championships so far. I was a bit tight at the start of the match, not swinging through the ball as smoothly as I would have liked to and Cameron was dominating the play,” he went on. “I felt that I got lucky in the second set to break his serve. At 4-3, he missed a couple of put-aways and gifted me that game and I felt from that game momentum shifted a little bit.”
Djokovic has now won his last 27 matches on grass and hasn’t lost on Centre Court since the 2013 final. Of course Djokovic will now face Nick Kyrgios on Sunday in his 9th Wimbledon final and 32nd Slam final. He’s 0-2 against the Australian with both losses coming over five years ago.
“One thing for sure, there is going to be a lot of fireworks emotionally from both of us,” Djokovic said of the final. “It is going to be his first Grand Slam final. He is very excited and he doesn’t have much to lose and he is always playing like that. He is playing so freely, one of the biggest serves in the game. Just a big game overall, a lot of power in his shots. We haven’t played for some time. I have never won a set off him. Hopefully it can be different this time.
“It is another final here at Wimbledon at a tournament I love so much. Hopefully the experience can work in my favour.”
Kyrgios, who enjoyed a day off, met the press to talk about the final and his lack of sleep.
“I had a shocking sleep last night, though, to be honest. I probably got an hour’s sleep just with everything, like the excitement. I had so much anxiety, I was already feeling so nervous, and I don’t feel nervous usually,” Kyrgios admitted. “I just know there’s a lot of people that want me to do well and give my best. But I had a shocking sleep last night. Hopefully I can get some sleep tonight.
“I was just restless, so many thoughts in my head about a Wimbledon final. That’s all I was thinking about,” he added. “I was thinking just playing, obviously imagining myself winning, imagining myself losing, everything.”
The Australian still can’t believe he’s in a Slam final.
“I never thought I’d be here at all, to be brutally honest with you. Obviously when I was No. 1 junior in the world and I was playing here as a junior, I can’t give enough credit to juniors, what it did for my confidence. Being around the Grand Slams at that young age, being around some of the top players, the facility, I don’t think I would have had the breakthrough in the men’s so quickly. But I never thought that I’d be playing,” Kyrgios said. “I saw some of the professionals walking around and I’d be a junior here, and I never thought I’d be playing for the actual men’s title. I feel like it’s the pinnacle of tennis. Once you are able to raise a Grand Slam trophy, I mean, kind of what else is there to achieve?
“So I never thought I’d be here. I’m just super proud and I’m just ready to go. I’m going to give it my all and we’ll see what happens.”
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“..9th Wimbledon Final..”
July 8th, 2022 at 10:20 pm