Novak Djokovic has produced the ultimate assist for Borna Coric during the trophy presentation at the Shanghai Masters.
After prevailing over the 21-year-old in a dominant display, the Serb was on hand to offer some words of wisdom – in Chinese.
“I was in China for the last four weeks and I was trying really hard to learn Chinese, but I cannot do it,” Coric said in his runner-up speech.
“I’m going to speak in English, I’m sorry guys.”
Coric’s admission only prompted the presentation host to ask, “well I guess you could say ‘hi’ to everybody in Chinese”.
The request left Coric a bit stunned for words, but he eventually produced a “nia hao”, which translates into “hello”.
Despite the effort, Djokovic was quick to step in and provide a quick Chinese lesson for the young gun, prompting him to say “Wo Ai Ni” to the crowd.
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Whether he knew what it actually meant or not, it had the crowd laughing as Coric had just told them all, “I love you”.
The nice moment followed what was a cracking match-up between the pair, and even though Djokovic helped Coric out post-match, he didn’t give him a break during the match itself.
Djokovic extended his incredible service record in the final against Coric, after an epic 6-3 6-4 victory.
The 31-year-old won the title without dropping a single game off his own racquet – making it 49 unblemished games across the tournament.
‘New Novak’ sends scary warning to Nadal
The “new” Novak Djokovic warned that he was gunning for Rafael Nadal’s world number one ranking after winning the Shanghai Masters with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Borna Coric on Sunday.
The 14-time Grand Slam champion has been imperious all week and barely offered a sniff to the 19th-ranked Croatian, a good friend and sometime-training partner.
The end when it inevitably arrived was anti-climactic, with the Serb winning the championship point after a video review.
Djokovic buried his head in his hand at the absurdity of it.
The 31-year-old will leapfrog Roger Federer into second in the world when the rankings are released on Monday but will not stop there as the season reaches its climax.
Spanish great Nadal, who was not in Shanghai or Beijing last week because of a knee injury, will be just 215 points ahead of Djokovic in the race to finish as year-end number one.
“I could not ask for a better scenario,” Djokovic, who last sat atop the rankings two years ago, said of his late surge to the summit of men’s tennis.
“I am very close now to Nadal in the rankings and put myself in a good position for the last period of the year.”
Red-hot Djokovic has now been victorious in 18 ATP matches in a row and in recent months won Wimbledon, the Cincinnati Masters, the US Open and now Shanghai for a fourth time.