Novak Djokovic says winning a 10th Australian Open to equal Rafael Nadal’s record 22 Grand Slam men’s titles is “the biggest victory” of his life.
Djokovic, 35, beat Stefanos Tsitsipas in Melbourne having missed last year’s event after being deported because of his Covid-19 vaccination status.
He also had to deal with a hamstring injury and a row involving his father.
“Only the team and the family knows what we have been through in the last four or five weeks,” said the Serb.
“I would say this is probably the biggest victory of my life, considering those circumstances.”
Djokovic was overcome with emotion after sealing a straight-win over Greek third seed Tsitsipas on Rod Laver Arena.
After climbing into the box to celebrate with his team and family, he broke into tears and laid down in the middle of them as the magnitude of his achievement hit home.
Djokovic continued sobbing under his towel when he returned to his chair on the court. The win sees him return to world number one for a record-extending 374th week from Monday.
Twelve months ago, Djokovic was not allowed to play after being deported from Australia following the coronavirus saga which eventually led to his visa being revoked after a court case.