Quick, name the best men's professional tennis player in the world. Roger Federer? Guess again. Rafael Nadal. You're getting closer. It's Novak Djokovic, who early this morning helped write history by winning the longest Grand Slam singles final ever, the 5-hour, 53-minute Australian Open men's championship.
More importantly, Djokovic is only the fifth man since the Open Era began to win three straight Grand Slam finals. Nadal, Federer, Pete Sampras and Rod Laver are the only others. Unfortunately, in losing to Djokovic today, Nadal became the first man in the Open Era to lose three straight major finals. He lost to Djokovic at last year's Wimbledon and U.S. Open.
The final score: 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7, 7-5.
One of the more thrilling volleys came late in the fifth set—it included 31 booming shots—the longest of the match.
Both players struggled to stay standing during the awards ceremony.
"Unfortunately there couldn't be two winners," Djokovic told the crowd.