On June 13, Novak Djokovic became the first tennis player in the open era to achieve a double career Grand Slam. That is to say that he's won all four major tournaments at least twice. His latest victory at the 2021 French Open men's final saw him lose the first two sets before rallying back to claim three straight. It was heartbreak for his opponent and first time finalist, Stefanos Tsitsipas—turns out, there's never a big enough lead when you're facing the most mentally resilient man in professional sports.
"I like to play young guys in best-of-five," Djokovic said after a similar match-up in the fourth round. "Even if they are leading by a set or two, I still like my odds." Not that his odds suffer when playing the older guys either. In the 2019 Wimbledon men's final—a tournament Federer fans have erased from memory—Djokovic saved two championship points against the king of grass before going onto win in five sets.
We have never seen anyone perform quite as well under pressure. As he continues his charge at thirty-four, stealing away records from two of tennis's most beloved players—Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal—Djokovic is building his legacy on broken hearts. Fans are running out of excuses to deny him the crown. Players are entering and leaving their primes as he refuses them a single trophy. It all points to the same conclusion. Novak Djokovic must be a robot.
He wants line officials replaced by HawkEye technology
"The technology is so advanced right now, there is absolutely no reason why you should keep line umpires on the court," Djokovic expressed in 2020. Rejecting long-standing tradition in favour of absolute precision and efficiency? It sure sounds like something a robot would say.
He claims he's not a robot
"I'm not a robot," Djokovic has said on many a occasion. Sometimes, it's to explain his on-court outbursts. Otherwise, to defend his right to his views and opinions. A completely valid sentiment, of course. But then again, maybe it's all a ruse to throw people off the scent.
His peers claim he is a robot
In 2015, Leonardo Mayer, a fellow professional who has played and lost against Djokovic twice, said "Djokovic is a robot. The ball always comes back to you and it does not stop until he steps on your head, we say." It's a rather violent image—very Terminator-esque if you ask me.
Former tennis professional, Chris Evert, shares a similar view. "At times, Novak is not a human," she said in 2020. "I look at him and I see more of a robot, but in a good sense." I have a feeling that that last part was added in so she'd stay in his good graces during the uprising. Better safe than sorry.
cosplays as a robot reveals his true self from time to time
Are we really to believe that he's dressed up as Captain Hook here? I mean, with the metallic arm attachment and the makeshift Terminator eye—it's clear as day, really.
Moja verzija Kapetana Kuke ??⚓ pic.twitter.com/AbtGiRqy52
— Novak Djokovic (@DjokerNole) March 24, 2020
One of the greatest tennis players of our generation is, in fact, a robot. And that's science.