Novak celebrates 37th birthday with milestone


On Wednesday, Novak Djokovic became only the third player in the Open era to win 1,100 tour matches. He celebrated this milestone along with his 37th birthday in Switzerland.

The Serbian beat Yannick Hanfmann 6-3, 6-3 in the Geneva Open to qualify for the quarter-finals of the tournament.

When the winning shot was hit, the spectators spontaneously started singing for his birthday, while a cake with cherries was also brought onto the court.

“I don’t think the cake would have tasted as sweet if I hadn’t won the game!” joked Djokovic.

“Thank you all for singing to me. I really appreciated it and it made the day more special.”

Djokovic decided to play in Geneva after struggling to find his clay-court feet in Rome.

He was eliminated in the third round of the Italian Open by Alejandro Tabilo. A water bottle hit him on the head two days before the defeat and he later complained of nausea and dizziness.

The world’s leading player has not yet played in a final this year and he has lost five of his 18 matches.

The danger lights probably also flickered in the match against Hanfmann on Wednesday when the German enjoyed a lead of 3-0 in the second set, but Djokovic won six pots in a row to conclude the showdown.

Only Jimmy Connors (1,274) and Roger Federer (1,251) have won more tour matches than him.

Djokovic will be primed to fire on all pistons in the French Open. He is not only the defending champion in Paris, but a 25th Grand Slam title is also at stake.