Novak Djokovic has won Wimbledon after a 6-4, 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 victory over Rafael Nadal.
In four sets of pulsating tennis, the Serb, who will become world number one on Monday, deserved the moment after dominating for most of the match.
After eight years of dominance in SW19 from Nadal and Roger Federer, Djokovic stops a run of victories from them which goes as far back as 2002.
Nadal, before the match, had won twenty previous matches at Wimbledon so to some it was a shock, but to anyone who has watched Djokovic this season will have half expected the result.
Nadal looked the most dangerous in the opening games; hitting some rasping forehands down the lines. But Djokovic soon settled in and was able to match Nadal from the back of the court with his ground-strokes, in particular his backhand.
The first set was extremely tight, with little opportunities to break for either player. Nadal, in actual fact, had 90% of first serves in at one point. However, the first break point arose at the very end of the set.
Nadal was 30-0 ahead but then failed to serve a first serve in. The Serb took advantage of this, winning four straight points to win the opening set after Nadal had made a couple of unforced errors.
Djokovic, affectionately known as Nole, was playing brilliantly, with Nadal unusually struggling to keep pace with his ground-strokes. The Serb has only lost once in the last 49 matches this year, to Federer in the semi-finals at the French Open, and it was easy to see why.
And he broke immediately in the second set. Some great speed and anticipation allowed Nole to reach Nadal’s drop shot to angle it away from the soon-to-be-dethroned world number one’s racket.
Still to suffer a break point himself, Nole made it a double break by bullying Nadal around the back of the court, with the Spaniard, so used to be doing the very same thing to his opponents, remarkably having no answers. This allowed Djokovic to win an easy set 6-1 with a comfortable service hold to love.
Djokovic made fourteen winners in this set opposed to only six from Nadal. Only one sign of what was occurring out there on Centre Court.
Nadal, however, broke in the beginning of the third set, indeed his first break point of the match. Djokovic, now starting to tighten for the first time in the match, hit the net with his forehand to give Nadal his first major breakthrough in the contest.
Just as the Serb did in the previous set, Nadal took the double break to secure the set 6-1. The defending champion had finally made his mark in the match and the momentum appeared to be moving his way.
However, this all changed in the beginning of the fourth set. Djokovic, looking rather wary at this stage, saved a break point and then broke himself to 15 in the next game.
Nadal answered by showing why he has won ten grand slams by breaking back immediately, although with some fortune after the ball hit the top of the net and trickled over.
Nole responded by breaking to make it 5-3 after a couple of unforced errors from Nadal. Now serving for the Championship, nerves were bound to play there part, but the Serb had the courage and conviction to serve it out and win his first Wimbledon title.