THE CHAMPIONSHIPS 2011
Djokovic Receives Hero's Welcome In Belgrade
by ATP Staff|
World No. 1 and Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic received a rapturous reception on his return to Serbia on Monday.
The Belgrade native was honoured in his hometown as close to 100,000 Serbian tennis fans gathered to welcome him in Parliament Square, where he arrived on an open-top bus that took hours to travel from the airport due to the volume of fans hoping to glimpse him.
Traffic on the motorway ground to a halt as fans stopped their cars to salute the Serb on his way into the city centre, but he eventually arrived to a deafening roar as he leaped onto a specially erected stage, where rock bands had been entertaining the crowd.
Joined on the stage by his family, Djokovic held aloft his replica Wimbledon trophy and told the chanting masses, “This is absolutely unbelievable and I will owe you forever for tonight because you succeeded in making this day the biggest day of my life.
"The time has come to bare all my emotions to you and all I can say is that you are the best in the world because only Serbian fans can throw a party like this. This trophy is dedicated to you; this trophy is dedicated to Serbia.
"We have a soul that is second to none and with the team event coming up, I can promise you we will do everything in our power to win it all again," added the Serb.
Earlier in the day, Djokovic had returned to the All England Club, scene of his triumph over Rafael Nadal, to conduct a media tour, speaking to publications and broadcasters from around the world. The 24 year old is now set to travel to Halmstad, Sweden, for defending champion Serbia’s Davis Cup quarter-final tie this weekend.