HEAD’s long-standing fruitful partnership with Novak Djokovic has led to a new benchmark in tennis history, with Djokovic’s 23rd Grand Slam title.
The 36-year-old Serb beat Norway’s Casper Ruud in Sunday’s final at Roland-Garros, Paris, to edge one ahead in the all-time list of men’s Grand Slam champions.
Djokovic, who first worked with the Austria-based racquet brand during his junior days, now has 23 major singles titles. That compares with Rafael Nadal’s 22, Roger Federer’s 20 and Pete Sampras’s 14. Djokovic is now level with Serena Williams and just one short of Margaret Court’s record of 24 singles titles set in the 1960s and 70s when not all the top players travelled to all the Grand Slam tournaments. For years it was thought Court’s record would never be beaten, certainly not by a male player.
“Novak never ceases to amaze us,” said Ottmar Barbian, executive vice-president of HEAD’s racquet sports division, “and we are pleased that he has achieved this landmark at Roland-Garros. It’s also a massive accomplishment for the range of Speed racquets that Novak endorses, and everyone at HEAD is proud of this feat and our phenomenal partnership with him.”
Sunday’s title is Djokovic’s third at Roland-Garros, where he is the only man to beat Nadal twice and one of just two men to beat him at all on the Parisian clay. The Australian Open is the Serb’s most successful major as he has won it 10 times, alongside seven Wimbledons and three US Opens. He could make more history at Wimbledon next month by becoming the most successful champion there and equalling Margaret Court’s record.
Following the Serb’s historic triumph in Paris, he returns to the number one spot for a record 388th week amassed in several spells dating back to July 2011. It leaves him just 12 weeks away from becoming the first man or woman to be ranked number one for an astonishing 400 weeks.
Djokovic has played most of his career endorsing racquets from the Speed range. He played with HEAD as a junior and has won all but one of his major titles with a HEAD in his hand.