Novak Djokovic will be No.1, might be Wimbledon champion
Second-seeded Novak Djokovic, who has only lost one match this year, is guaranteed to be ranked No. 1 in the world Monday but that's not the 24-year-old Serbian tennis player's No. 1 objective this weekend. Djokovic would like to win his first Wimbledon as well.
Djokovic earned both the No. 1 ranking and a spot in Sunday's final with a 7-6 (4), 6-2, 6-7 (9), 6-3 win over 12th-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga Friday.
After Djokovic recovered from being behind 2-0 early in the first set, he tired out Tsonga, who had come from two sets behind to upset Roger Federer in the quarterfinals. Both players charmed the Centre Court by playing scrambling, diving points. Tsonga once hit a volley from his knees and tried another from his back.
And in the third set, when it seemed the match was over, Djokovic served for the win and got broken. Tsonga responded strongly in the third-set tiebreak, saving two match points and finally taking the set with a giant service winner.
But the effort Tsonga put forth in that tiebreak seemed to leave him with nothing in the final set. The 26-year-old Frenchman, who had a 5-2 career advantage over Djokovic, lost the first three games in 10 minutes. Tsonga lost the first eight points of that set, putting an end to his dream of coming back a second straight time from two sets down. Tsonga had upset six-time Wimbledon champion Federer after losing the first two sets in the quarterfinals.
Djokovic, 24, fell to the ground and kissed the grass on Centre Court. "It's difficult to put into words," Djokovic said of his emotions. "This is one of my best feelings I've ever had on a tennis court," he said. "My dreams are coming true. Hopefully there will be some more celebrations to come."
His opponent in Sunday's final will be the winner of the upcoming semifinal between defending champion and top-seeded Rafael Nadal and fourth-seeded Andy Murray.
-- Diane Pucin, reporting from Wimbledon, England
Photo: Novak Djokovic. Credit: Stefan Wermuth / Reuters.