For a while, it looked like the tennis spoof “7 Days in Hell” was becoming a reality between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer in the Wimbledon final. The top two players in the world battled through not one, but two sets of tiebreaks, splitting them, and a rain delay in a match that looked like it was going to go all day. In the end, however, Djokovic outlasted Federer in the fourth set, going 7–6 (1), 6–7 (10), 6–4, 6–3.
The victory gives Djokovic consecutive Wimbeldon titles (both over Federer). The last male tennis player to achieve such a goal? Federer, of course.
It truly was a battle of wits in addition to a battle of pure athleticism, as it appeared after the second tiebreak that Djokovic was on the verge of a complete meltdown.
But, behold, the power of grapes!
Djokovic would win the next two sets in more convincing fashion on the scoreboard, but this was beautiful tennis from start to finish and about as back-and-forth as it comes. It really was the type of final the sport deserves.
And, as he’s done before, Djokovic sampled Wimbledon’s grass after his victory.
“I have to say it’s always a great privilege playing against Roger. He’s a great champion, he’s done so much for our sport on and off court,” Djokovic said afterward (via Sports Illustrated‘s live blog.) “He makes you push your limits. He makes you work hard to earn every single point. In the back of my mind that added a little bit of pressure.”
“I think Novak played not only great today but the whole two weeks, plus the whole year, plus last year, and the year before that. He deserves it. Well done, Novak,” Federer said. “That’s how it goes. He was tougher on the big points and he was solid at the end.”