By Alexander Adejoh
Novak Djokovic battled through a five-set thriller with Dominic Thiem to maintain his dominance at the Australian Open last week, claiming a record eighth title and returning to world No. 1 in the process.
The indomitable Serb stretched his unbeaten streak this season to 13, but he had to rally from two sets to one down to beat the courageous fifth-seeded Austrian 6-4, 4-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 in a nearly four-hour marathon.
It was his 17th Grand Slam title, moving him within two of Rafael Nadal and three behind Roger Federer on the all-time list.
“This is definitely my favourite court, my favourite stadium in the world and I am blessed to hold this trophy once again,” said Djokovic.
Victory at the Rod Laver Arena put him alongside his fellow legends as only the third man in history to win eight or more titles at the same Slam after Nadal (12 at the French Open) and Federer (eight at Wimbledon).