‘With everything Novak Djokovic has accomplished, he has gone up an extra level’: Cedric Pioline

Former tennis champion, Cedric Pioline says that Novak Djokovic has "gone up an extra level" and knows how to handle every "movie" of the match.

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic triumphed over the Italian, Matteo Berrettini in the Wimbledon Championships 2021 in a thrilling 4 set match. This win gave the Serbian his 6th Wimbledon win and his 20th Grand Slam title. The Big 3, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are now equaled for the most Grand Slam titles.

Djokovic has won the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon this year. He is on track and in very good form to achieve a Calendar Golden Slam if he prevails at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and U.S. Open. 

When speaking to L’Équipe, the former French tennis player, Cedric Pioline said he was very impressed by the mental strength of the World number 1. He explains what he thinks really changed in his mind.

Cedric Pioline: ‘Djokovic handles every “movie” of the match very well

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic

“You have the feeling that in the last two or three years, when he was already a great champion, with everything he has accomplished, he has gone up an extra level,” Pioline said. “But not necessarily in his game only – more in what he gives off, a sort of added assurance, something impalpable floating in the air.”

“For me, that’s what makes him a better tennis player,” he added “He might not be playing his best game, but he handles every “movie” of the match very well. He knows exactly when it counts, when to really tighten the screws and take the score to kill his opponent’s hope.”

He also pointed out that the more the Serbian wins, the more confidence he gains and how his experience gives him an advantage over the younger players. 

“Djokovic is, as previously Federer and Nadal were at certain points in their careers, in a vicious cycle – ‘The more I win, the more confidence I gain, the more confidence I gain, the less I panic, the better I manage’,” said Pioline.

“Added to this is a phenomenal “experience” compared to every young first-time finalist like Berrettini or Tsitsipas, who plays his first Grand Slam final against an opponent who has about thirty behind him,” the Frenchman added.

Also read: “Novak Djokovic’s domination is so big that many people are jealous,” says coach Marian Vajda