Novak Djokovic has put Roger Federer on notice that he’s coming for his grand slam record after a brutal straight-sets victory at Wimbledon on Wednesday.
The World No.1 has begun Wimbledon like a man on a mission as he eyes off a number of slices of tennis history.
The 34-year-old described his 6-3 6-3 6-3 second-round win over twice grand slam runner-up Kevin Anderson as “almost flawless” and no one on Centre Court would disagree.
Djokovic made just five unforced errors in a masterful display against the South African he also beat in the 2018 final.
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And while he did lose the first set of his opening round match against inspired British teenager Jack Draper, what has followed has been an ominous statement of intent.
Djokovic is not only chasing a sixth Wimbledon title and third in a row, he can also match Federer and Rafa Nadal’s men’s record haul of 20 grand slam titles.
And if that’s not enough, he is also halfway to the calendar-year sweep of all four majors – last achieved by Rod Laver in 1969.
If he wins Wimbledon, Djokovic can also compete for the ‘Golden Slam’ of winning all four majors and an Olympic gold medal.
By the end of the year Djokovic might have well and truly settled the GOAT (greatest of all-time) debate.
Novak Djokovic, pictured here after his win over Kevin Anderson at Wimbledon.
Novak Djokovic celebrates his win over Kevin Anderson at Wimbledon. (Photo by Steven Paston/PA Images via Getty Images)
Novak Djokovic vows to learn from 2016 failures
Djokovic was eyeing the same sort of history in 2016 having also arrived at Wimbledon as a hot favourite after winning the Australian and French Open titles.
Then, at Wimbledon, he was stunned by American Sam Querrey in the third round.
So Djokovic will certainly not be letting his guard slip when he plays American Denis Kudla on Friday.
Looking back to 2016, Djokovic said he had come in feeling a little deflated after the high of winning his first French Open.
“I’m going to try to learn from that experience that I had in 2016,” Djokovic, bidding to become the fifth man in history to win the first three grand slam tournaments of the season since Laver in 1969, told reporters.
It got a bit dicey towards the end, but Venus Williams is into the second round with a 7-5, 4-6, 6-3 win over Mihaela Buzarnescu.
Seems crazy that that match was relegated to No. 3 Court, but when you’ve got blockbusters like Zverev vs Griekspoor to showcase, what can you do 🙄
— The Tennis Podcast (@TennisPodcast) June 29, 2021
Regardless, of the furore, Williams was in high spirits after her victory and was even able to crack a joke during her ESPN interview.
Following the match, the question of Williams’ longevity once again popped up.
KATE, Duchess of Cambridge makes jaws drop after sharing a breathtaking picture from the Lake District
The Duchess of Cambridge spent an active day on land and water in the Lake District in the rugged northwest of England.
As part of her ongoing campaign to showcase the benefits of spending time in nature, Kate kicked off the day by going mountain biking with some air cadets.
The mother of three, 39, “passionately believes that spending time outdoors plays a pivotal role in children and young people’s future health and happiness, building foundations that last over a lifetime by encouraging active exploration and the opportunity to form and strengthen positive relationships,” according to the palace.
When she visited the area in June 2019 with Prince William, Kate told locals that her children love the area and walking in the fells. She also recalled how, when she was growing up, she loved to go boulder hopping in the countless streams that criss-cross the mountainsides.
Tuesday’s visit came as the RAF Air Cadets Windermere Adventure Training Centre was opened following a refit costing around $3 million (£2 million). Kate is the Honorary Air Commandant of the Royal Air Force Cadets. Hundreds of cadets from around the U.K. will use the center during their visits to the spectacular Lake District “to build their confidence and leadership skills” as they work toward achieving their Duke of Edinburgh Awards, Kate’s office at Kensington Palace said.
After her morning with the air cadets, Kate was set to hear more about how the stunning lakeland area also provided healing from one of Europe’s darkest chapters: the aftermath of the Holocaust.
She joined a boat trip with two of the Windermere Children, a group of 300 Holocaust survivors who were brought to stay in the Lake District in 1945 to help them recuperate following the atrocities they experienced in concentration camps and the ghettos of Nazi-occupied Europe.
“She was absolutely delightful,” Ike Alterman, a 93-year-old survivor from Poland who was a prisoner at Auschwitz, Buchenwald and Theresienstadt, told PEOPLE. “We laughed, she asked questions and she wanted to know the answers. We talked about her kids and my kids, and how we love the lakes. I have two girls and two grandchildren. I told her what happened to me during the war and when I arrived and how I progressed in business later.”
He added, “I didn’t know what to expect, but we spoke like a couple of friends. She was so down-to-Earth.”
Arek Hersh, 92, was also joined by the Duchess on the boat. A survivor of Auschwitz, he lost his parents and his brothers and sisters — in total 81 members of his family perished. He settled in Leeds, Yorkshire, and worked as a mechanic and, in later years, as a landlord for students in the city. He is featured in the 2020 film The Windermere Children and the documentary The Windermere Children: In Their Own Words.
“It was very nice. She was very interested,” he told PEOPLE. “It brought back happy memories of being on the lake.”
This group of children were called the ‘Windermere Children’. I wanted to be able to meet some of the survivors Ike & Arek in person to hear their stories; about how they went on to create their own companies, write a book & to this day, still sneak in the odd round of golf.(2/3) pic.twitter.com/XNTimAxZ8K
— The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (@KensingtonRoyal) September 21, 2021
The Duchess’s office explained she wanted to meet some of those who came to the area at the time and hear how they had been helped to heal from their traumatic experiences by undertaking outdoor recreation, sport and art therapy at the Calgarth Estate nearby.
That poignant part of Kate’s visit to the Lake District very much fit in with both her and the other royals’ desire to engender religious tolerance and understanding, as well as to find imaginative ways to educate about past atrocities.
Last year, Kate highlighted some of the incredible stories of survival amid the Nazi occupation of much of Europe when she photographed Holocaust survivors and their grandchildren.
Tiger Woods Joins Simone Biles, Naomi Osaka, Others in NFT Craze: Partners With Tom Brady’s New Company
Over the last few months, we’ve all seen athletes release NFTs (nonfungible tokens) of their own. The buzz around those has increased with time, players as well as fans including in this digital collecting. This time, golf icon Tiger Woods is the latest addition to a list of celebrities to release a line of NFTs online.
According to recent reports, Woods taking part in this recent craze is via a company linked to NFL star Tom Brady. Let’s take a look at what exactly Woods has invested in.
THROWBACK : WATCH When Serena Williams Called Maria Sharapova B*TCH
Serena Williams vs Maria Sharapova is one of the most heated rivalries in the women’s game. Their match-ups have always been the most compelling ones. The viewership of their battles has been sky-rocketing compared to other rivalries on the WTA Tour.
There is some kind of friction existing between the two of them and the Grand Slam champions have never really got along with each other. In Sharapova’s autobiography, Unstoppable its mentioned their relationship has some kind of ‘intense antagonism.’
Post her two consecutive defeats, Williams has been ruthless against Sharapova on all the surfaces. Sharapova must have stunned the world by defeating Williams at Wimbledon 2004 finals and WTA Championships, but she lost 20 consecutive matches against the American veteran tennis player.
The heated-rivalry of women’s track has witnessed some bitter moments. One of them took place on Rod Laver Arena during the Australian Open 2007 finals. Serena was steamrolling over Maria in the first set with a 5-0 lead. Sharapova released her serve and later Williams charged onto the net.
The Russian wasn’t holding back, even she sprinted to the net, and in a blink of an eye, she smashed the ball on Serena Williams. A frustrated Serena moved back to the baseline for the next reception and simultaneously uttered the ‘B’ word.
Later, Williams thrashed the Russian ace 6-1, 6-2 and clinched her third Australian Open title.
“I will never lose to that little bitch again” – Serena Williams
According to Maria Sharapova’s autobiography, Unstoppable, Serena was super-annoyed after losing to the lanky Russian at Wimbledon 2004. The battle could be termed as Williams, the physical Goliath vs Sharapova, like David.
The American just couldn’t accept her Wimbledon final defeat to a 17-year-old skinny girl. Out of disappointment, Serena once used the ‘B’ word for Maria.
“Not long after the tournament, I heard that Serena told a friend — who then told me — ‘I will never lose to that little bitch again,’” Sharapova depicted in her book.
Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova (Picture Courtesy: USTA)
The salty rivalry of the women’s game concluded at Flushing Meadows during US Open 2019. In their very-first round-one WTA match-up Serena Williams took 59 minutes to crush Sharapova 6-1, 6-1.