Novak Djokovic Ends 2021 On Yet Another High With Prestigious European Award

Published 12/28/2021, 11:47 PM EST
Tennis – ATP Finals – Pala Alpitour, Turin, Italy – November 19, 2021 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his group stage match against Britain’s Cameron Norrie REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

The accolades do not stop coming for Novak Djokovic in 2021. The World No. 1 finished the year with three Grand Slam titles. Moreover, he was also the World No. 1 for the seventh time this year, which was a new record.


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Furthermore, his country Serbia also honored Djokovic with his own domestic and international postal stamps. In fact, no athlete in the country has ever had that honor.

Now, he ends the year on yet another high, as he is the European Sportsman of the Year.


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Novak Djokovic achieved great heights in 2021

The PAP European Sportsperson of the Year award is annually presented by the Polish Press Agency. 27 international news agencies consider all European female and male athletes for their achievements over the year.

Tennis – Davis Cup Finals – Group F – Serbia v Germany – Olympiahalle, Innsbruck, Austria – November 27, 2021 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic reacts during his match against Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

This year, Novak Djokovic secured the most number of points in the voting at 172 points. The Serbian edged out Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski and 2021 F1 Champion Max Verstappen. Lewandowski and Verstappen scored 133 and 125 points respectively. In fact, Robert Lewandowski was the defending champion of the award.

Moreover, this is the fourth time the 20-time Grand Slam champion has won this award. Previously, he won the award in 2011, 2015, and 2018.

Djokovic won three Grand Slams this year, in Australia, France, and London. Despite being so close to the famed Calendar Grand Slam, he fell short at the very last stretch. The Serbian lost the US Open Final to Russian Daniil Medvedev in straight sets.


Furthermore, before the US Open, he also lost his chance to achieve the Golden Slam, exiting the Tokyo Olympics 2020 this year in the semifinals.


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Tennis – ATP Masters 1000 – Paris Masters – Accor Arena, Paris, France – November 7, 2021. Russia’s Daniil Medvedev congratulates Serbia’s Novak Djokovic on winning the final match REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

While young tennis stars like Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev are knocking on the door, Djokovic continues to win most major tournaments.



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World No. 3 Alexander Zverev has stated that he believes Djokovic, Medvedev, and himself will form the next big trio in tennis. In fact, he has snubbed many other young stars like Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev in his predictions.


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Thus, it is a testament to Novak Djokovic’s longevity and talent that he is still considered the player to beat, even when a whole new generation of talented players have entered the sport.

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Varun Khanna

1335 articles

Starting off as a tennis author in 2018, Varun Khanna has gone on to contribute to EssentiallySports in various capacities. After setting up interviews with the likes of Serena Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou, Alizé Cornet, and Noah Rubin, Varun is now part of all major ATP and WTA press conferences and has gone on to pen more than 1300 articles for EssentiallySports. He now heads the tennis and NBA division of the organization.