French Open 2021: Novak Djokovic gifts winning racquet to young fan

Paris: After winning the French Open title here on Sunday, World No.1 Novak Djokovic chose a young, vociferous fan to gift his racquet with which he had defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece.

After Djokovic defeated Tsitsipas in a five-set humdinger 6-7(6), 2-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4, the World No. 1 handed his racquet to a young boy in the stands, who was ecstatic after receiving the ‘trophy’.

Djokovic said during the post-match press conference that there was a reason for choosing the boy.

“He was in my ear the entire match basically, especially when I was two-sets-to-love down. He was encouraging me. He was actually giving me tactics, as well. He was like, ‘Hold your serve, get an easy first ball, then dictate, go to his backhand.’ He was coaching me, literally,” said Djokovic.

“I found that very cute, very nice. So, I felt like to give the racquet to the best person was him after the match (sic). That was kind of my gratitude for him [for] sticking with me and supporting me.”

Djokovic became only the sixth player in the Open Era to come back from two sets down to win a Grand Slam final.

Former world No. 1 John McEnroe of the US, who was one of the commentators for the match, said: “He’s pumped up! Maybe get him to sign it while we’re at it. Inspire him to get on the court and practise. Sleep with that racquet!”

(IANS)

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