'Greatest ever': Legend's big Novak Djokovic call after French Open epic

·5-min read
Novak Djokovic is pictured here after his epic win against Rafael Nadal at the French Open.
Tennis fans are hailing Novak Djokovic as the greatest player of all time after his epic win against Rafael Nadal at the French Open. Pic: Getty

Novak Djokovic's monumental French Open semi-final victory over Rafael Nadal has seen the World No.1 hailed by tennis fans as the greatest player the sport has ever seen.

The World No.1 admitted after the 3-6 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 victory over Nadal that it was his "finest" performance ever at Roland Garros, and in the "top three" of his entire career.

'RIDICULOUS': Djokovic seals unprecedented French Open feat

'BULLS**T': Alexander Zverev loses it in French Open meltdown

'DISGRACE': French Open rocked by 'disgusting' controversy

The Serb's incredible victory keeps the 18-time grand slam champions's hopes alive of edging closer to Nadal and Roger Federer's all-time record of 20 major trophies.

Djokovic - who now faces Stefanos Tsitsipas in the French Open final - is also just one victory away from completing a second career Grand Slam.

His extraordinary win against Nadal saw tennis legend John McEnroe suggest that he could be regarded as the greatest player of all time.

“He could be considered the greatest ever,” McEnroe said on NBC.

It was a sentiment shared by countless fans on social media after watching Djokovic become the only man to beat Nadal twice at Roland Garros, with the Spaniard only losing three matches out of 108 in total on the Parisian clay.

Djokovic is also the first man to beat Nadal in a five set match after losing the opening set.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.
This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.
This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.
This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.
This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.
This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Viewers watching the thrilling semi-final unfold - like Djokovic - were at a loss for words to describe the quality of tennis between the two men.

Tennis great Chris Evert said if you were to give it a film title it would have to be "the greatest match ever played."

Andy Murray enthused on Twitter: "You cannot play better clay court tennis than this. It's perfect."

Three-time former French champion Mats Wilander reckoned on Eurosport the pair "are not human", saying he'd never seen a better clay-court match.

Seen here, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal with contrasting reactions during their French Open semi-final.
Novak Djokovic became the first man to beat Rafael Nadal twice at the French Open. Pic: Getty

German star Mischa Zverev, brother of semi-finalist Alexander Zverev, said they'd played "at a level that's from another planet."

He added: "At times, it felt they're playing a computer game because no matter where they hit the ball, (a) it's landing in and (b) the other guy is already there and it feels impossible that they can make winners, but they still do."

Tennis commentator David Law insisted it was the greatest win of Djokovic’s entire career.

“He’s 34, won 18 Grand Slam singles titles, nearly 1,000 matches, and been World No.1 for 324 weeks. But for me, that was the finest win in the career of Novak Djokovic. And it could be the turning point in how he is remembered many years from now.” he tweeted.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

World No.1 'climbs Mount Everest'

Djokovic hailed his defeated opponent after the semi-final, before trying to put his remarkable achievement into context.

"It's hard to find words bigger than all the superlatives you can think of for Rafa's achievements in Roland Garros," said the World No.1 following his incredible 3-6 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 victory carved out over nearly four and a quarter breathtaking hours.

"Definitely the best match I was part of ever in Roland Garros and one of top three matches I ever played in my entire career, considering the quality, playing my biggest rival on the court where he's had so much success and been the dominant force in the last 15-plus years.

"The amount of wins that he has made on this court (Philippe Chatrier) is incredible. Each time you step on the court with him, you know you have to kind of climb Mount Everest to win against this guy here.

"I mean, he has been the most dominant player of the Roland Garros history. He lost two - now three times - in his entire career. He's been playing here almost 20 years. That achievement speaks for itself.

"I won only once in our eight matches that we ever played in Chatrier. It's a match I'll always remember."

with agencies

Watch 'Mind Games', the new series from Yahoo Sport Australia exploring the often brutal mental toil elite athletes go through in pursuit of greatness:

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting