Novak Djokovic: US Open champion wants to earn support

Media playback is not supported on this device

Djokovic will not criticise crowd

World number one Novak Djokovic says he must earn the support of tennis fans after facing crowd hostility in his US Open final victory over Roger Federer.

The Serb beat Federer 6-4 5-7 6-4 6-4 at Flushing Meadows in New York on Sunday to win his 10th Grand Slam.

But as he battled to win his third tennis major of 2015, Djokovic was booed and jeered by Federer supporters.

"I'm there to earn the support and hopefully in the future I can be in that position," Djokovic said.

Why is Djokovic cast as a villain?
"Djokovic is a wonder of a ferociously competitive age... And yet he is inevitably cast as the strait-laced villain to those more flamboyant heroes, as stern and sinister as Terence Stamp in Superman II, not so much General Zod as General Djok."
BBC Sport's Tom Fordyce, after Novak Djokovic beat Roger Federer to win Wimbledon in July

'You do sometimes let things distract you'

The 28-year-old has enjoyed the most successful year of his career on the Grand Slam circuit, adding victory at Flushing Meadows to his Australian Open and Wimbledon titles, while also reaching the French Open final.

He did win three Grand Slam titles in 2011, but only reached the semi-final in Paris that year.

Djokovic acknowledged the antipathy he received from the New York crowd was a distraction and over the course of three hours and 20 minutes "you do have some ups and downs in concentration".

He added: "It's important to go back to basics and remember why you are there and what you need to do.

"Everybody has a choice to support a player that they want to support."

'Federer deserves his support'

Roger Federer
Roger Federer won five US Open titles in a row from 2004 to 2008

Djokovic's emotions were running high as he tried to deal with the crowd's reactions - and he ripped off a button on his shirt after a particularly passionate celebration.

But after his victory over Swiss 17-time Grand Slam champion Federer, Djokovic said: "I can't sit here and criticise the crowd.

"On the contrary, I think it's logical to expect that a great player and a champion like Roger has the majority of the support anywhere I play him.

"He absolutely deserves to have the support he does because of all the years and success that he had and the way he carries himself on and off the court. No question about it."

'Butler's movie inspired me'

Gerard Butler and Novak Djokovic
Actor Gerard Butler (with beard, in the dark shirt) joined the celebrations as Djokovic won in four sets

As he celebrated with his family and team, Djokovic sought out Scottish actor Gerard Butler, a friend who was watching from the stand.

Butler starred as the king of war-torn Sparta in the 2007 fantasy film 300, which the world number one said had inspired him to victory.

Djokovic said: "We are good friends. He happened to be in the city over the last couple of days, so I invited him to come.

"I actually sent him a photo and a message last night. I was watching the 300 movie. When I went to my box, I looked at him and said, 'This is Sparta.' It felt great.

"That's one of the most inspiring movies I watched. So actually, yeah, he's a very cool guy."

Top Stories