Novak Djokovic - Australian Open 2023

Novak Djokovic labelled ‘superhuman’ by seven-time Grand Slam champion

Novak Djokovic beat Stefanos Tsitsipas, 6-3 7-6(4) 7-6(5), to win a record 10th Australian Open title and was very emotional in his victory, something that former No.1 Mats Wilander has never seen from the Serb before.

Wilander is a tennis expert for the Australian Open, which is live and exclusive on discovery+ and Eurosport, and won seven singles Grand Slam’s, including three Australian Open titles.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen [Novak as emotional as that],” said Wilander, “It goes to show the emotional effort it takes to win 22 Grand Slams. This is why he’s got 22, because he’s so emotionally invested.”

In his speech, after lifting his tenth crown in Melbourne, Djokovic implied that the impact of being deported from Australia last year played a part into his emotional state, to which Wilander described him as ‘superhuman’.

“If he has to deal the stuff we do, he is superhuman and it makes for great TV. But I think his strength is not dealing with any of it, except playing tennis. Then, at the end of it, the tears come out but he is as hard as nails during the two weeks.”

The Swede continued, “I never felt that kind of emotion in any match or tournament where I’ve had to let it out like that since I was young. He has won 22 Slams, and that’s the main reason. He’s involved, and engaged all the time.”

By winning a 22nd major, to equal Rafael Nadal at the top of the all-time list, Djokovic also regains his spot as No.1 for a seventh time.

Wilander thinks this played as a huge incentive for Djokovic in reclaiming the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup, “I don’t think 19 or 20 would’ve made the difference but 22 and being number one in the world again. How many tournaments did he play last year, 11 in 12 months? And he’s still number one so he is dominating.”

Watch every match from the Australian Open live and exclusive on discovery+, Eurosport and the Eurosport App.

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.