Tallon Griekspoor earns more than Novak Djokovic, and it feels wrong

Novak Djokovic and Tallon Griekspoor claimed the ATP 250 titles last week

by Jovica Ilic
Tallon Griekspoor earns more than Novak Djokovic, and it feels wrong

Novak Djokovic and Tallon Griekspoor are the first winners of the ATP titles in 2023. The Dutch player secured his first ATP crown after passing one of the weakest draws this season. On the other hand, Novak toppled two top-20 rivals and prevailed over an inspired Sebastian Korda in the title clash after over three hours to earn his 92nd ATP crown.

Despite much more challenging opponents, Djokovic received less money than Griekspoor for winning Pune! Of course, it has nothing to do with the players themselves (the Adelaide organizers had to prepare the appearance fee for Djokovic and Medvedev), but it still feels wrong in many ways.

Tallon passed a top-20 rival, Marin Cilic, without even stepping on the court and beat four opponents from outside the top-55 to lift the trophy. On the other hand, Djokovic toppled two French rivals to reach the Adelaide quarter-final.

He faced world no. 18 Denis Shapovalov and ousted him in straight sets to arrange the semi-final battle with world no. 7 Daniil Medvedev. Djokovic survived injury and beat the Russian in straight sets to advance into the final.

Novak had to give his 120% to clinch the trophy, saving a match point in a thrilling 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 triumph over Sebastian Korda. The encounter lasted three hours and nine minutes, and two rivals pushed each other to the limit from start to finish.

They traded only three breaks and stayed neck and neck until the final set's closing stages. They needed an hour and 13 minutes to complete the opening set, and it was a roller coaster ride. Sebastian broke in the ninth game and served for the set in the next one.

The young gun created three set points on serve in game ten and squandered them all, including a routine backhand at the net on the third.

Novak Djokovic and Tallon Griekspoor are the first champions in 2023.

Djokovic broke back following the rival's backhand error and extended the battle.

Sebastian sprayed a backhand mistake in the 12th game and experienced a set point. Korda denied it with a booming serve and landed another to bring the game home and introduce a tie break. The youngster moved 5-2 up when Djokovic netted a backhand.

The American cracked a backhand down the line winner in the tenth point to create two set points. Novak stayed calm and climbed back to 6-6. Korda saved the second set point at 6-7 with a powerful serve and missed his chance at 8-7 after Novak's good serve.

Sebastian seized the seventh set point at 9-8 to wrap up the set after 73 minutes. Djokovic produced five comfortable holds in the second set before facing a match point at 5-6. The Serb denied it with a smash winner and held to introduce the second tie break.

Sebastian fell 3-1 behind after a loose forehand and netted a backhand in the fifth point to push Novak further ahead. Korda saved two set points at 1-6 before Djokovic clinched the breaker 7-3 to force a decider. Sebastian claimed four straight points from 30-0 down in the eighth game to level the score at 4-4 and increase the drama.

Novak held after deuce in game nine, placing a backhand winner to move 5-4 up and force the rival to serve to stay in the match. Korda wasted game points before missing a smash and offering Djokovic a match point. Novak converted it to celebrate the title and match Rafael Nadal's 92 ATP titles.

Tallon Griekspoor Novak Djokovic