Novak Djokovic marked another historic occasion in his illustrious career with a beautiful moment that’s captured the hearts of fans around the world.
Djokovic avenged his his US Open final defeat against Daniil Medvedev by beating the Russian 4-6 6-3 6-3 to claim a record-extending sixth Paris Masters title.
The win gives Djokovic an unprecedented 37th Masters 1000 title overall – moving him ahead of Rafael Nadal.
Djokovic’s heroics in the French capital also ensured he ends the year as World No.1 for a seventh time – beating the record he shared with Pete Sampras.
The Serb is now one clear of fellow 20-time grand slam winner Nadal for Masters trophies, and nine ahead of Roger Federer, the other tennis great with 20 majors.
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Making the occasion even more special for the Serbian superstar was the presence of his two children watching from the stands.
The 34-year-old revealed afterwards that it was the first time in his career that both son Stefan and daughter Tara were court-side to watch one of his matches.
Djokovic’s delight was obvious as he walked over to his wife and kids for a hug after the match, in a lovely moment that sent the internet into meltdown.
Novak Djokovic takes delight in family first
“I’m very grateful and blessed to have this opportunity. It’s actually one of the biggest reasons that I keep on playing because I always dreamed of having my children on the stands,” Djokovic told Tennis Channel afterwards.
“This is what life is all about, sharing these moments with the dear ones and my children are my greatest success, greatest treasure and I don’t know I’m just overwhelmed with beautiful emotions having them on the court today.
“Them supporting me just brings love and joy to my life.”
Djokovic was looking to avoid ending a season without a Masters title for the first time since 2017 and kept his cool throughout to accomplish his mission against the reigning Paris Masters champion.
The World No.1 said he had moved on from the disappointment of the loss to Medvedev in the US Open final that denied the 20-time major winner a ‘golden slam’.
Pictured here, Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning the Paris Masters title for a sixth time.
Novak Djokovic’s triumph in Paris saw him claim a record 37th Masters title. Pic: Getty
“I already closed that (US Open) chapter, to be honest. I’m not regretting it, really. I’m not spending days suffering because I didn’t take the calendar slam this year,” Djokovic said.
“I’m very relieved that the calendar, that the grand slam season was done, because I felt a tremendous pressure unlike anything I felt in my life.
“So it was an interesting experience, and I’m very satisfied with the way I played in grand slams, three wins and a final. I mean, there is much more positive things to be grateful for and to look at than negative.
“I have always been honest enough to say that the history of our sport is too big a motivation.
“It is an objective, yes, to prove that I can break all the records with all the results that I can obtain on the tour professionally.
“So, yes, I love breaking records. I’m very motivated to carry on. My priority is the grand slams and Masters 1000 where you can gain the largest number of points. This is an added benefit of our sport.”
Djokovic will now set his sights on the ATP Finals in Turin later this month, where he will be looking to match Federer’s record haul of six titles at the season-ending event.
Lewis Hamilton has already suggested the perfect way to end Max Verstappen debate
LEWIS HAMILTON missed out on landing his eighth F1 championship last month.
Lewis Hamilton missed out on landing a record eighth F1 championship last month as he was beaten to the title in controversial style at the season-decider in Abu Dhabi. Hamilton led for almost the entire Grand Prix, before race director Michael Masi allowed title rival Max Verstappen to pull level with him for a one-lap shootout after a safety car had come onto the track following a crash.
Verstappen ultimately won the race to claim his maiden title. And the Dutch driver has been tipped to dominate the sport for the next decade.
Hamilton has been revered as one of the best drivers in F1 history but will surely call time on his career in the coming years.
Verstappen is the new star of F1 and he will now want to stamp his authority on the sport and prove that he is the man to beat.
The rivalry between Hamilton and Verstappen was intense last year and led to a string of mouthwatering races.
The duo came to blows on a number of occasions as the championship proved all-consuming…
With the Red Bull driver finally toppling Hamilton last time around, the narrative around which driver is better will continue to be debated by everyone involved in the sport.
Hamilton has illustrated year after year that he is a formidable force in F1 and is at least on par with all of the superstars that went before him.
But Verstappen’s ability is clear to see. He has an edge and acts decisively to get the upper hand in races.
The debate is sure to continue during the 2022 season – but Hamilton has already suggested the perfect way to determine which driver is better.
In 2019, the Stevenage-born ace admitted the duo’s skill levels would be clear for all to see if Verstappen joined Mercedes as they would be driving the same car as team-mates.
“I see positives and potential negatives,” Hamilton said. “In some ways it would work well for me.
“I see stories that we have different cars and that is the only way [I beat him], so that would give me the opportunity to show that is not the case.”
Hamilton signed a new two-year contract with Mercedes last year, while Verstappen’s Red Bull deal also runs until the end of the 2023 season.
And with the competition between the two set to intensify once again next season, the chances that the duo will ever race alongside each other as team-mates is virtually zero.
So F1 fans and pundits will have to make their own minds up about which driver is the best.
Windsor: ‘Hamilton won’t be able to beat that well-oiled machine’
Peter Windsor is very critical of Lewis Hamilton’s title chances for 2022. He already mentioned the points by which the seven-time world champion will be at a disadvantage at the beginning of next season.
Inaddition, his prediction for the denouement of 2022 is also not tender for the Mercedes driver.
Hamilton gets tough with ‘machine’ around Verstappen
“If Hamilton is going to be world champion, it’s going to be because of something really strange has happened,” Windsor says in a video on You Tube.
All of Hamilton’s talent and the complete package he has around him at Mercedes will not be enough to beat the well-oiled machine made up of Max Verstappen, Sergio Perez, Adrian Newey and Red Bull Racing in 2022, according to F1 expert Windsor. The Brit concludes that it is going to be very difficult.
After his defeat in Abu Dhabi last year, it has been suspiciously quiet around the seven-time world champion. The F1 world is wondering if the Briton will return behind the wheel this year. Windsor also wonders. He does not think so, but he does expect the performance in 2022 to play a crucial role in the further course of Hamilton’s career.
“If Mercedes doesn’t have any advantage and is indeed slightly slower than Red Bull, then all those other points are going to count too. Hamilton will ask himself, ‘Do I really need this?'” Windsor hopes that his compatriot decides that he does indeed need ‘this’ and that we will continue to see Hamilton race for a long time to come, but concludes, “It’s going to be very difficult to maintain that impressive motivation of his when everything is stacking up against him.”
Carrie Underwood liked a video against…mandates. ‘Now the mob is coming’
It’s open season on country singer Carrie Underwood — kind of — for the offense of liking a conservative commentator’s video opposing schools’ mask mandates for kids.
The “Jesus, Take the Wheel” hitmaker was one of nearly 50,000 people who liked the video, which was posted Thursday on Twitter. It featured conservative pundit and Daily Wire contributor Matt Walsh at a Nashville school board meeting arguing that mask mandates for school-age children are akin to child abuse, given kids’ very small risk of death — not risk of infection, but risk of death — from COVID-19.
“Like anyone else, I am upset and disturbed that Carrie Underwood liked one of my tweets,” Walsh tweeted sarcastically Tuesday afternoon. “She should know better than to indirectly endorse the opinions of an extremist and scoundrel such as myself. Her lack of judgment is appalling. I demand that she renounce me and apologize.”
A few hours later, he tweeted, “Carrie Underwood liked my video and now the mob is coming for her. She should know better than to like something that they don’t like. This is an unforgivable sin.”
And the mob was there, perhaps nudged by a trending blurb on Twitter.
“Carrie Underwood being a God-over-Science person is the least surprising thing I’ve heard today,” author and Unitarian pastor John Pavlovitz tweeted. “Delta take the wheel…”
“Carrie Underwood is an anti-masker. She’s canceled in my book. Who else’s?,” actor Angela Belcamino asked.
Some extrapolated Underwood’s like of the Walsh video to mean she’s against the COVID-19 vaccine.
“Carrie Underwood being Anti Vaxx….anyways we still stan Kelly Clarkson forever the best winner of American Idol,” one person wrote.
“Dolly Parton help fund a vaccine to fight off covid. Carrie underwood is helping spread anti mask & antivaxx misinformation,” another user wrote. “Class vs trash.”
But others, including “Relatable” podcast host Allie Beth Stuckey, defended the singer.
“Carrie Underwood liked a video about kids not being forced to wear masks — a position totally supported by data — and she’s being called an anti-vaxxer,” Stuckey wrote. “In case you thought your ‘nuanced’ takes would save you from the leftist cancel mob… they won’t.”
Meanwhile, other Twitter users thought folks had their priorities screwed up in general.
“In Afghanistan, women are getting raped by terrorists. In America, people with blue hair are throwing a tantrum because Carrie Underwood liked a tweet,” wrote free-speech radicalist Christian Walker, son of NFL great Herschel Walker. “We’re doomed.”
The “Before He Cheats” singer previously drew COVID-related criticism for performing at the Country Jam music festival, which ran over three days in late June just outside Grand Junction, Colo. The event, held outdoors and in line with state and local pandemic guidance, resulted in a few COVID-19 cases among festival staff and the 24,000 people per day who attended.
She and husband Mike Fisher have two young sons, ages 6 and 2.
Underwood hasn’t taken any action on Twitter since Thursday. Her publicist didn’t respond immediately to a request for comment Wednesday.
Walsh, a Nashville-area parent of four, is against mask mandates in general and made his point about kids and masks at a recent meeting of the Metro Nashville Board of Education.
“You and the school board have decided that our kids should go to school all day, every day, wearing muzzles like rabid dogs,” he said in the video. “I have listened to your arguments and I’ve noticed they are missing a few things, namely evidence, data, science, common sense and basic human dignity. You presented no facts at all, so let me do that now.”
Walsh then compared death rates in kids from the flu to those from COVID-19. The flu death rate was higher, he said, before emphasizing that in the 2018-19 flu season — the year of his data — nobody had suggested that kids wear masks.
The video now has more than 1.2 million views, almost 50,000 likes and more than 15,200 retweets.