Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal battled it out for an astounding five hours and 53 minutes during the Australian Open Final last night, with Djokovic ultimately reigning victorious and becoming a part of tennis history.
Can you even imagine? For those in attendance at last night’s final, they certainly got their money’s worth! Five hours and 53 minutes is the longest grand slam final in the history of the sport and the longest match for the Australian Open. A physical battle indeed. On Friday, Djokovic’s match against Great Britain’s Andy Murray lasted four hours and 50 minutes. I don’t even know how Novak was able to have the strength for last night’s final, let alone last almost six hours. Following his win, he said:
“It was the longest grand slam final of all time. Just hearing that fact makes me cry. I am very proud to be a part of history, to be among the elite group of players who have won this trophy several times. I had a lot of chances to win it in four sets but he deserved to prolong it and then really both of us could have won the match, it could have gone either way.”
Djokovic’s 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7(5), 7-5 victory is the seventh straight win for Novak over the Spaniard, and his No. 1 ranking still remains intact. It was a different tale over on the women’s side after Victoria Azarenka beat Maria Sharapova in the final last night. Following her win, Azarenka is now ranked No. 1, Sharapova moved to No. 3, Petra Kvitova stayed at the No. 2 spot, and Caroline Wozniacki went down to No. 4 from No. 1.
Truly an epic match, one that will go down in the history books. At a press conference following the final (which ran until 1:30 am Monday, Melbourne time), Nadal was asked how he was feeling physically, to which he replied, “Fine. No, I’m tired, sure. Physically was the toughest match I ever played, if not the tougher. I am tired.”
Let’s hope that Djokovic and Nadal got some much needed rest today!