Novak Djokovic ‘hungry’ for ‘most anticipated final’ with Carlos Alcaraz
Novak Djokovic has admitted that he is ‘hungry’ to take on Carlos Alcaraz in the Wimbledon final this afternoon, as he bids to equal Roger Federer’s incredible record.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion is now gearing up to play world No.1 Alcaraz, who he was very complimentary about when speaking to press.
“This is probably the most anticipated finals I guess from the beginning of the tournament, from most of the people,” claimed Djokovic. “Alcaraz, myself… It will be his first finals in Wimbledon.”
He continued, “He’s so young, but he’s incredibly consistent now, also on grass. Which I don’t think many people expected him to play so well because his game is basically, yeah, built and constructed and developed for clay mostly or slower hard courts. But he’s been incredibly successful in adapting to the surfaces and demands and challenges of opponents on a given day.
“Kudos to him. Amazing player. Great guy also off the court. He carries himself very, very well. He respects the history of the sport, respects everyone. No bad words about him at all.”
Djokovic has also described the upcoming contest as the ‘greatest challenge’ to him, “I think, judging by the performances that we have seen from all the players, I think this is probably the best finals that we could have. We are both in good form. We’re both playing well.
“I guess I want to take this title without a doubt. I look forward to it. It’s going to be a great challenge, greatest challenge that I could have at the moment from any angle really: physical, mental, emotional.”
It is the second successive major that Djokovic and Alcaraz will play each other, with the Spaniard struggling with cramp at Roland Garros.
Djokovic has suggested that the change in surface will make it less likely for history to repeat itself for 20-year-old, “We had a very good match until he started struggling physically in Paris. I think we really took the level of tennis very high. I think was great for the audience and great for us players to be part of that.
“Obviously completely different conditions here. Grass is massively different from clay. Yes, I do have more experience playing in many more Grand Slam or Wimbledon finals than him. Still he’s in great shape. He’s very motivated. He’s young. He’s hungry. I’m hungry, too, so let’s have a feast (smiling).”
Alcaraz has revealed that his first final at SW19 is a dream, “It’s a dream for me to play a final here in Wimbledon and it’s even more special against Djokovic. He is a legend of our sport and I always say if you want to be the best you have to beat the best.”
The US Open champion added, “I want to win Wimbledon one day but it would be more special if I beat Novak in the final. It’s going to be a really emotional moment for me. This is something I looked for since the draw came out to play a final with him and I’m going to enjoy.”
— Roland-Garros (@rolandgarros) July 16, 2023
Djokovic is looking to claim an eighth Wimbledon title, and fifth in a row, to equal Federer’s record and Alcaraz will be looking to become the first man to beat the Serb at The Championships in six years.
Not only is the Wimbledon title on the line in this match, but also the No.1 ranking that Alcaraz and Djokovic have regularly traded throughout 2023.
Novak Djokovic vs Carlos Alcaraz head-to-head
As the anticipation for this final builds up, we at Tennishead wanted to look back on their two previous meetings that were both on clay:
Djokovic vs Alcaraz: 1-1
- Alcaraz beat Djokovic, 6(5)-7 7-5 7-6(5) (Madrid 2022)
- Djokovic beat Alcaraz, 6-3 5-7 6-1 6-1 (Roland Garros 2023)
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