Novak Djokovic’s dream of winning the Golden Slam has come to an end in Tokyo. Djokovic, who entered his semifinal match on Friday having not lost a set during the Tokyo Olympics, lost in stunning fashion to Germany’s Alexander Zverev, who emerged with a 1-6, 6-3, 6-1 victory over the world’s top-ranked player.
Djokovic had been aiming to become the first man to win all four majors and Olympic gold in the same calendar year, matching the feat Steffi Graf achieved in 1988. Djokovic’s bid to become the first men’s tennis player to win the coveted Golden Slam, which includes victories in all four Grand Slam events and the Olympics in the same year. He had already won the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon this year, and was in need of a victory at the Tokyo Games and the US Open. He seemed on his way to another easy win after taking the first set against Zverev 6-1 with the same ease he has displayed throughout the tournament. With Djokovic up 3-2 in the second set, Zverev won the final four games for a 6-3 win, the first set Djokovic lost in Tokyo. Zverev then took a commanding 4-0 lead in the third and deciding set, bringing his run to eighth straight games before it was snapped by Djokovic. But that would be Djokovic’s lone victory in the set.