Serbia’s Novak Djokovic kisses the trophy after defeating Switzerland’s Roger Federer in the men’s singles final match of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London, Sunday, July 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

Djokovic edges Federer in 5 sets for 5th Wimbledon trophy

This triumph also earned Djokovic his 16th Grand Slam trophy

Novak Djokovic became the first man in 71 years to win Wimbledon after facing match points in the final, coming back to beat Roger Federer in an unprecedented fifth-set tiebreaker Sunday.

By barely emerging to win 7-6 (5), 1-6, 7-6 (4), 4-6, 13-12 (3) after nearly five tight, tense and terrific hours, Djokovic claimed his fifth championship at the All England Club and second in a row.

“Unfortunately in these kinds of matches,” Djokovic said, “one of the players has to lose.”

This triumph also earned Djokovic his 16th Grand Slam trophy, moving him closer to the only men ahead of him in tennis history: Federer with 20, and Rafael Nadal with 18.

Federer has ruled grass courts since the early 2000s; he has won Wimbledon eight times dating to 2003, and this was his record 12th appearance in the title match. But Djokovic is now 3-0 against Federer in finals at the place and 4-0 against him in five-setters.

This one was unlike any other, though.

That’s because, while it was reminiscent of Federer’s 16-14 fifth-set victory over Andy Roddick in the 2009 Wimbledon final, that score is no longer possible: The All England Club altered its rule this year to do away with never-ending matches and institute a tiebreaker at 12-all in a deciding set.

At one point during the final set Sunday, Djokovic asked chair umpire Damian Steiner whether the change called for the tiebreaker at 10-10. Later, when Djokovic held for an 11-10 lead, it was Steiner who got confused, beginning to call out the score as 11-9, before catching himself.

Federer and Djokovic pushed each other to the limit in what became as much a test of focus and stamina as it was about skill. It is destined to be discussed for years.

“I’ll try to forget,” joked Federer, who is less than a month shy of his 38th birthday and would have been the oldest man to win a Grand Slam title in the professional era.

First, it was Federer who kept falling behind, then coming back. He twice trailed by a set. He was down a break early in the crucible of the fifth. And, then, after seemingly gaining the upper hand, standing a single point from winning while serving for the victory at 8-7, 40-15, he faltered.

He sent a forehand wide on the first championship point, and Djokovic produced a cross-court forehand winner on the next. Soon enough, the 32-year-old Djokovic had broken back and on they would play.

Djokovic has done this to Federer before. In the semifinals of the 2010 and 2011 U.S. Opens, Djokovic erased two match points before coming back to win each time.

ALSO READ: Trudeau stresses balancing economy, environment during brief Stampede visit

___

Howard Fendrich, The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Organization’s stolen wheelchair van recovered on backroad near Hope

Wheelchair accessible van is only transportation for some people in Hope and Fraser Canyon

Police ask public’s help locating missing Hope woman

Penelope Leslie Lackey has not contacted her family since mid-June

Get a free sneak peek at modern ballet performance in Chilliwack

New ballet @giselle is putting the final touches on its show at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre

Rescuers pluck climbers off rock face near Mt. Slesse

Chilliwack SAR team members used long-line suspension to assist climbers

Evacuation route out of Harrison inches forward

The District of Kent approved a nearly $19,000 proposal to look at three routes out of the village

VIDEO: Could we BE any more excited? ‘Friends’ fans go crazy for merch

Movie theatres will show select episodes to mark the NBC series’ 25th anniversary

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Officials say 50 Oppenheimer Park residents have agreed to leave, as deadline looms

Residents have been told they must be gone by 6 p.m. on Aug. 21

Five hedgehogs quickly adopted after being left at BC SPCA

Lucky new owners picked up their pets from Maple Ridge branch on Aug. 20

B.C. cricket players get interrupted by racist remark

Community has had protocols in place for years to respond to prejudice

Groovy B.C. wedding a throwback to Woodstock ‘69

Couple hosts themed wedding 50 years after legendary festival

‘Do the right thing,’ implores sister of South Surrey stabbing victim

IHIT confirms male arrested in connection with Paul Prestbakmo’s death no longer in custody

Nearly 50% of Canadians experience ‘post-vacation blues’: poll

48 per cent of travellers are already stressed about ‘normal life’ while still on their trip

Most Read