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Tennis

Novak Djokovic clinches sixth ATP Finals title with statement performance

Novak Djokovic has won the 2022 ATP Finals, equalling Roger Federer’s record of six titles at the end-of-season tournament. 

The Serbian defeated No. 3 seed Casper Ruud in straight sets in the title match, prevailing 7-5 6-3. 

The victory caps off an eventful and bizarre season for Djokovic, in which he missed two majors – the US Open and Australian Open – and earned no points for winning Wimbledon. 

However, his success in Turin will see him finish 2022 as world No. 5, but still 2000 points behind the top-ranked Carlos Alcaraz.

MORE: Every result from the 2022 ATP Finals

In a tense opening set, both players held serve for the first 10 games.

Then, in typical Djokovic fashion, the former world No. 1 turned up the heat to secure the pivotal break point and take the set 7-5. 

He went on to break his Norwegian opponent’s serve early in the second set, taking a 3-1 lead.

Later, he won a thrilling 36-shot rally to bring up championship point, before clinching his sixth title via an ace.

Djokovic’s win over Ruud was his first ATP Finals triumph since 2015, and at 35 years old, he becomes the oldest player to win the title.

Djokovic has also bolstered his ‘Big Titles’ record, having now picked up 65 crowns from events comprising Grand Slam tournaments, the ATP Finals, ATP Masters 1000 tournaments and Olympic gold medals.

He now holds a six-title lead over his nearest rival Rafael Nadal (59).

Speaking post-match, the Serbian was pleased he delivered at key moments during the tie.

”It is finals. Usually, these kind of matches are decided by very small margins,” Djokovic said.

“One break of serve was enough in both sets. I knew Casper was playing really well coming into this match.

We both served really well and I think in some decisive moments, like the 12th game of the first set, I managed to put a few returns back in play.

”I made him run, made him play. I was really pleased with the way I played.

“I was looking to be very aggressive and it worked great. I am really pleased with the performance.”

As for Ruud, his 2022 season ends in slightly frustrating fashion.

Despite achieving a career-high ranking of world No. 2 in September and picking up three ATP titles, the Norwegian finished runner-up at two Grand Slam tournaments – the French Open and US Open.

He will now have to wait until 2023 to look to claim his maiden Grand Slam title.


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