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Novak Djokovic admits Roger Federer ‘the far better player’ in 2019 Wimbledon final

Novak Djokovic says Roger Federer was ‘by far the better player’ in the epic 2019 Wimbledon final that the Serbian won.

That match is considered by many to be the greatest in history. At four hours and 57 minutes it was certainly the longest.

Djokovic came out on top 7–6, 1–6, 7–6, 4–6, 13–12, although he believes the scoreline reflects the way the key moments went, not who was the better player on the day.

“I beat him 13-12 in the 5th set,” Djokovic told 60 Minutes of that match. “The sets that I won were all won in tiebreaks.

“Overall, if you see stats, he was the far better player in every aspect, but I won the match.

“So that actually tells you can still win if you pick and choose which moments of the match you’re peaking and playing your best when it matters.”

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Novak Djokovic explains source of mental strength

Anyone who watched that Wimbledon final in 2019, or any other significant Novak Djokovic match in his career, will know how big a master the Serbian is at winning the big points.

That has always been put down to his incredible mental strength and rightly so. He is, after all, the biggest clutch player the game has ever seen.

He, though, has rejected any idea that he achieves that by ignoring doubts or negative thoughts. It’s actually the opposite.

“In the moments when you’re under tension I might appear locked in but, trust me, there’s a storm inside,” he said.

“The biggest battle is always within. You have your doubts and fears. I feel it every single match. I don’t like this kind of mindset that I see a lot in sports. ‘Just think positive thoughts. Be optimistic. There’s no room for failure. There’s no room for doubts & stuff like this.’

“It’s impossible. You are a human being. The difference between the guys who are able to be the biggest champions and the ones that are struggling to get to the highest level is the ability to not stay in those emotions for too long.

“For me, it’s really relatively short. As soon as I experience it, I acknowledge it. I maybe burst or scream on the court. But I’m able to bounce back and reset.”

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Michael Graham, Editor, has been a professional sports journalist for his whole career and is especially passionate about tennis. He's been the Editor of for over 5 years and loves watching live tennis by visiting as many tournaments as possible. Michael specialises in writing in-depth features about the ATP & WTA tours.