Serbs welcome home champion Djokovic

Crowds in Belgrade welcome Novak Djokovic, 4 July 2011Thousands turned out to greet the Wimbledon champion
Related Stories

Wimbledon tennis champion Novak Djokovic has received a rapturous welcome in his native Serbia the day after winning the title.

A smiling Djokovic and his team were given an open-top bus tour from Belgrade airport escorted by a dozen police vehicles.

Outside parliament, tens of thousands of fans cheered as their hero raised a replica of the famous trophy.

Djokovic, 24, beat Spain’s Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s final.

“You made this day the best day of my life,” Djokovic told the screaming crowd.

Novak Djokovic greets crowds in Belgrade, 4 July 2011Djokovic raised a replica of the Wimbledon trophy to huge cheers from the crowd

“He is the pride of Serbia and [the] Serbian people,” said one teenage girl who had travelled some 80km (50 miles) to Belgrade from the town of Novi Sad.

“Lucky is the mother that gave birth to such a hard-working and gifted boy,” said onlooker Milorad Veselinovic.

Many of those gathered in Nikola Pasic Square carried Serbian flags and banners reading “Nole we love you” and “Nole the king” referring to Djokovic’s nickname.

Djokovic guaranteed his place as world number one when he beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the last four at Wimbledon.

He followed up by outplaying defending champion Nadal 6-4, 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 on centre court on Sunday.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *