Novak Djokovic heaped praise on Andy Murray and said the Scot's wife, Kim Sears, also deserved credit for the number one-ranked star's success in 2016. Murray outclassed Djokovic 6-3, 6-4 at The O2 Arena in London to clinch his first ATP World Tour FInals title and retained the number one spot he achieved earlier this month, as well.
While Djokovic began the year with two titles, in Australia and in France, Murray ruled the second half of 2016 with nine titles including wins at Wimbledon, Queens Club, Shanghai, Beijing and Paris along with the Rio Olympic Men's singles gold medal, in a year in which he also became a father.
Both the top-ranked players stole the limelight in London over the last week and the race for year-ending top-spot continued till the final night on Sunday. Murray, before the big night, had spent three hours more time on the court after setting the record for the longest match in the tournament twice, which included his three hour and 38 minute-match against Milos Raonic in the semi-final.
However, rallied by the home crowd, Murray still had legs to prevail in what was a one-sided affair in the title match. Djokovic, who fell short of his fifth consecutive ATP Finals title, said the Scot should not be pestered with questions about the next season but should be let to enjoy the moment.
"Don't ask him questions about next season. He deserves to be in the moment and to take in what he achieved. We should all let Andy enjoy this a little bit," Djokovic was quoted as saying by The Guardian. '
"His team as well – and his wife. She has to get some credit, guys. She gave birth this year. He has travelled all over the place.
"I know how it is with my wife, Jelena, what she had to go through as a mother back home with a little baby. So, Kim, well done. She has maybe made even a bigger effort than Andy."
Murray also revealed how he and his "main rival" used to keep tennis away from their discussions and always spoke about their families with each other. "When me and Novak speak with each other, we don't talk about tennis, rankings, the matches we play against each other," Murray said.
"But we talk about each other's families, children and stuff. We chatted at length this year quite a lot because obviously I became a father the first time. We spoke about the difficulty in keeping the sort of balance in your life with the family and the travelling and the work and everything."