The Serbian ace sealed the year-end No. 1 ranking for an unprecedented eighth time in his career thanks to a thrilling three-set win over Holger Rune on Sunday night. Djokovic put the capstone to another record-setting year in which he dominated at almost every tournament he played.
With six titles to his name this season, including three Grand Slams, he was unquestionably the ATP's MVP. Remarkably, these impressive numbers were hatched from playing just 11 ATP tournaments before the ATP Finals.
In front of a sold-out crowd at the Pala Alpitour in Turin on Monday, Djokovic made his entrance on the main court to rapturous applause. He broke his own record of being the oldest ATP year-end No. 1 in history at 36 and called it the "crown of the season" during his presentation speech.
"Obviously it’s the crown of the season, finishing the year as No. 1 in the world. think it’s a dream of every tennis player. It’s one of the most difficult things to do in our sport. Obviously winning Grand Slams and being No. 1 in the world are probably the pinnacles of the sport."
Djokovic then received the year-end No. 1 trophy from ATP Chairman Andrea Gaudenzi and posed for pictures while beaming. He raised the trophy aloft under bright lights. It is becoming quite a familiar scene at the end of every tennis season.
The 24-time major champion could not forget to salute the intangible work of his backroom team, including his coach Goran Ivanisevic, lauding it as a team effort and success of equal measure.
"It’s been a very long year for all the players and to be able to stand here is a blessing and I want to thank my team, who is here, my coaching staff, everybody, physiotherapist, fitness coach, Goran, Claudio, Marko, Miljan, Mark, Charlie, Carlos, everyone who has been on this road with me."
"It’s a team effort even though I’m standing by myself here on the court. But I can’t wait to be celebrating with them. This is a tremendous success and achievement and I’m very proud of it."