Novak Djokovic bested Matteo Berrettini in the 2021 Wimbledon men’s final Sunday, tying the men’s record for most tennis Grand Slam victories.
Djokovic, 34, of Serbia, beat Berrettini, 25, of Italy, to clinch his 20th Grand Slam singles title. The win ties him with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who have also won 20 Grand Slam singles events.
Djokovic held off Berrettini in four sets for his sixth title at Wimbledon. He sprawled on the ground after Berrettini hit the net on the final point as the crowd roared around him. After the match, the pair shook hands and briefly embraced.
Djokovic congratulated Berrettini, calling him “the Italian hammer.” Then he recalled his own childhood dreams of Wimbledon.
“Winning Wimbledon was always a biggest dream of mine when I was a kid. … I have to remind myself how special this is and not take it for granted,” Djokovic said, recalling how, when he was seven years old in Serbia, he made his own Wimbledon trophy as he imagined one day winning the real thing.
“Today, standing with the sixth Wimbledon, it’s incredible. Amazing,” he said.
Djokovic said that now that he, Federer and Nadal are tied for the most men’s singles Grand Slam titles, he expects they will continue competing until one of them emerges on top.
“They are legends of our sport, and they are the two most important players that I ever faced in my career. They are, I think, the reason that I am where I am today,” he said.
On the way to the final, Berrettini beat Hubert Hurkacz of Poland. Djokovic beat Denis Shapovalov of Canada to get there.
Berrettini’s appearance in the final at Wimbledon was the first by any Italian person, man or woman, The Guardian reported. He has yet to win his first Grand Slam event.