Skip to main content

Wimbledon: Novak Djokovic revels in grand slam win over Roger Federer

July 7, 2014 -- Updated 1205 GMT (2005 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Novak Djokovic hails Wimbledon final win over Roger Federer as best of his career
  • Serb is taken to the wire before sealing second Wimbledon title
  • Djokovic had lost five of the previous six grand slam finals he had competed in
  • Serb says he and head coach Boris Becker have proved the doubters wrong

(CNN) -- It was, said Novak Djokovic, the highest level of grand slam tennis he had ever been involved in, an unquestionable highlight of his career.

No wonder after the Serb surpassed such luminaries as his head coach Boris Becker on the all-time list of grand slam winners with a seventh career title after edging Roger Federer for a second Wimbledon crown.

Read: Djokovic wins Wimbledon epic

"It means a lot to me," Djokovic -- the newly crowned world No.1 -- told CNN after his 6-7 6-4 7-6 5-7 6-4 victory.

"No doubt this has been the highest level of a grand slam final that I was ever part of.

"I'm proud of the older achievements of my career. Before, the highlight of my career was the 2011 win at Wimbledon but this is even more special because of the fact I had lost five of the previous six grand slam finals.

"I've been through some tough moments privately and professionally."

In a pulsating final, neither player could be separated -- Djokovic seemingly in the ascendancy only to let slip a big advantage leading two sets to one and 5-2, before Federer broke back to force a fifth.

Novak Djokovic wins the ATP World Tour final
Kvitova describes 'perfect' match

But as two of the defining forces of men's tennis traded blows in a match complete with 143 winners, it was Djokovic who emerged triumphant, putting him on a par with John McEnroe and Mats Wilander on the list of all-time grand slam winners.

A year ago, Andy Murray had blazed past Djokovic in three sets to win Wimbledon.

The Serb's chance of redemption went awry in the final of the subsequent grand slam, the US Open, this time to Rafael Nadal, who was again his vanquisher at last month's French Open final.

Read: Nadal clinches record ninth French Open title

"The team has done great work to encourage me to keep on going, I've worked on myself in tennis and off the court to strengthen my mind and learn from the experiences and now it's all paying off," said Djokovic, reflecting on the psychological demons he has fought.

This was the first big win of his nascent relationship with Becker, a partnership that has raised a few eyebrows.

"It's a huge relief for both me and him and the whole team as there was a lot of pressure on us," added Djokovic.

"Since we started working there were a lot of doubts if we could win a grand slam with him as head coach, but we made it and we're going to try to embrace this win and enjoy it."

Djokovic's victory denied Federer an eighth Wimbledon title and 18th career grand slam title, leaving the Swiss without a grand glam win since 2012.

But Djokovic had words of consolation for his opponent.

"Roger proved why he is a 17-time grand slam champion and why he has been so successful and dominant in this sport for so many years because he knows exactly what challenges he's facing and what to play in important moments.

"He didn't drop his level much in the whole match so he didn't give me too many points but I had to earn everything that I had today and that's why I thought the level was tremendous and it makes the win even more special."

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
August 21, 2014 -- Updated 1252 GMT (2052 HKT)
As a player he was as fiery as his hair -- and as Novak Djokovic's coach, Boris Becker says he has to battle to keep his emotions in check.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 1102 GMT (1902 HKT)
Tennis great Boris Becker says he was stunned by the level of criticism he received after being appointed as Novak Djokovic's coach.
July 25, 2014 -- Updated 1101 GMT (1901 HKT)
"I didn't cry once when I practiced in front of the mirror," says Martin Emmrich. But the nerves kicked in when he got down on one knee on court.
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 0114 GMT (0914 HKT)
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
Rafael Nadal is still the "King of Clay" -- but his crown has slipped a bit, says CNN's Will Edmonds.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 0746 GMT (1546 HKT)
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
May 5, 2014 -- Updated 2359 GMT (0759 HKT)
British tennis player Elena Baltacha won 11 ITF Pro Circuit titles during her 16-year playing career.
The Ukrainian-born, British tennis star loses fight against liver cancer, just a few weeks after revealing that she was battling the disease.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.
April 16, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Suisse's Belinda Bencic returns the ball to France's Alize Cornet during the second match of the Fed Cup first round tennis tie France vs Switzerland on February 8, 2014 at the Pierre de Coubertin stadium in Paris. AFP PHOTO / KENZO TRIBOUILLARD (Photo credit should read KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP/Getty Images)
It's no easy matter becoming a world class tennis player. It's even harder when everyone (really -- everyone) is calling you the "new Martina Hingis."
April 2, 2014 -- Updated 1420 GMT (2220 HKT)
At the 2009 Australian Open, French men's tennis was the talk of the town.
April 15, 2014 -- Updated 1800 GMT (0200 HKT)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - APRIL 14: Rafael Nadal of Spain sails a boat during day two of the ATP Monte Carlo Rolex Masters Tennis at Monte-Carlo Sporting Club on April 14, 2014 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal may be most at home on a clay tennis court, but he has always found comfort on the sea.
ADVERTISEMENT