Can Novak Djokovic be the greatest ever?
Posted on August 01 2016
With red eyes on stalks, a cotton ball mouth and a dreading of the following workday I watched in amazement at the level of tennis Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray kept up for the first two sets of 2015’s Aussie Open Final.
Djokovic went on to dominate the year, which saw him finish with a record of 86 – 6, 3 grand slams, 11 singles titles, and 6 masters’ titles. But where does this rank in the great seasons of the open era and what does this mean for the all important, un-answerable question; who is the best ever?
His domination this year has, to my dismay as a die-hard Federer supporter, made me question if Djokovic is better than Federer at his prime.
Federer’s best year was the 2006 ATP season in which he had a record of 92-5 following up on his 2005 ATP season of 81-4.
For now Djokovic is behind on statistics in almost every category; the big one being a further 7 grand slams to reach Federer’s record. But Djokovic’s current domination shows no sign of faltering.
He does not dismantle opponents in quite the same way as Federer did a couple years back and still does but his mental tenacity, extreme physical fitness and athleticism seem to give him the advantage over the top three in the big occasions – something Federer has always struggled with.
Whereas Federer often faltered against Rafael Nadal, Djokovic seems to have no major rival – no kryptonite. His loss against Wawrinka, was nothing short of miraculous but it seemed just a minor set back in an otherwise fall gone conclusion that he will soon win the Roland Garros.
Whether he can replicate last year’s season and add the additional French Open title, or whether he can become the best ever is still to be decided but he is most certainly knocking on the door. As for the current moment, in my opinion Federer’s title is still firmly in tact.