An emotional Novak Djokovic declared that his Australian Open final triumph over Rafael Nadal is the best win of his career.
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Djokovic and Nadal broke all Australian Open final records with a pulsating epic which lasted nigh on six hours and left spectators and pundits alike declaring it the greatest match of all time.
"This one I think comes out on the top because just the fact that we played almost six hours is incredible, incredible. I think it's probably the longest finals in the history of all Grand Slams, and just to hear that fact is making me cry, really," Djokovic told a packed press room.
"I'm very proud just to be part of this history, part of the elite of the players that have won this tournament for several times, and I was very flattered to be playing in front of Rod Laver, in front of the alltime greats, and in front of 15,000 people that stayed until 1:30 a.m. It's incredible, really."
Djokovic looked on the verge of collapsing during the fifth set but somehow hit back from 4-2 down, surviving some punishing baseline rallies to take it 7-5.
"I had lots of chances to finish the match in the fourth, but he came up with some incredible serves and incredible points," Djokovic said.
"So he deserved to prolong the match in the fifth set, and then really both of us could have won the match. It could have gone either way. I felt my body started to slow down, but on the other hand, I was aware of the fact that he's not as well feeling that great and fresh on the court. I'm sure that physically it's taking a toll on him, as well. So I tried mentally to hang in there, to hold my composure, to hold my emotions. And, you know, even when I was 4-2 down I still pushed myself up to the limit."
"But these kind of matches I'm a professional tennis player. I'm sure any other colleague tennis player would say the same: We live for these matches. We work every day. We're trying to dedicate all our life to this sport to come to the situation where we play six hour match for a Grand Slam title."