Having his family around was a major motivation for Novak Djokovic to win a record-equalling six titles at the ATP Finals against Casper Ruud, in straight sets 7-5 6-3 in 1 hour 33 minutes.
Djoko-Six! Novak Djokovic wins record-equalling Nitto ATP Finals title
Novak Djokovic equals Roger Federer's six titles at ATP Finals and walks away with a record payday of more than $4.7million.
The Serbian first became a champion in Shanghai back in 2008, and fifteen years later he was back in the final looking for a Roger Federer record-equalling sixth title, which he did in outstanding fashion by winning all sets and staying undefeated throughout the championship.
It is the fourth time he has finished the tournament unbeaten, having previously done so in 2012, 2013 and 2014.
Novak Djokovic equals Roger Federer's ATP titles record
Also, Federer was the oldest winner to have won at the age of 30 years and 4 months in 2011. Djokovic has erased that record by taking this year's title at the age of 35 years and 182 days.
Despite his victory, the final wasn’t an all smooth sailing ride for the 35-year old, as Casper Ruud put up a spirited performance, especially in the first set where Djokovic seemed to be struggling physically and shaking, just like in his match against Daniil Medvedev.
But it’s Djokovic, he always finds a way. An intense ball striking and he gets the first break of the match, taking the first set 7-5 having hit fourteen winners and six aces.
In the second set, the Norwegian did what he could to bounce back but couldn't find a way past Djokovic and his strong defence.
Novak Djokovic wins 6th ATP Finals title
The Serbian won 85 percent of his points on first serve and grabbed an early break to lead 3-1. Although Ruud reduced the gap, it wasn’t enough as Djokovic served out the match at 5-3, firing home an ace for the needed victory.
"Seven years, it's been a long time," Djokovic said. "At the same time, the fact that I waited seven years makes his victory even sweeter and even bigger.
"It's a huge deal (to end the year with a win). I've probably talked about this season and how unusual it is a thousand times, so I'm not going to repeat what most people who follow tennis know. It's just a big relief and satisfaction.
"Also, I look forward to having a couple of weeks off," Djokovic continued. "I was on the needles (edge), whether it was for tournaments or waiting for permission to go somewhere. So, I'm really glad that I managed to end it in a positive way."
His triumph ensured he maintained his unbeaten run against Ruud. He also walks away with a record payday of more than $4.7 million, as well as 1,500 ATP Rankings points placing him as No.5 seeded player in the world. The title is his first at the season-ending competition since 2015.
Ruud can also be proud of his achievements this season, making appearances at three Grand Slam finals and ending the year No.3 seeded player in the world. Though he lost in all finals, hopefully he can step it up a notch by winning bigger titles next year.