Stefanos Tsitsipas will face Serbian Novak Djokovic in the Roland Garros tournament final this Sunday, June 13, to be broadcast live at 16:00 Greek time.
At the French Open semifinals held in Paris on Friday, Tsitsipas became the first Greek player to reach a Grand Slam singles final after beating German player Alexander Zverev.
After two emotional, career-redefining semi-final victories – and two dramatic, action-packed weeks in Paris – it will be 18-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic taking on Greece’s first major finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas for the Coupe des Mousquetaires crown at the Roland-Garros stadium.
During the French Open, Djokovic was seen wearing a simple wooden cross. After winning his exciting semi-final against Rafael Nadal on Friday, June 11, Djokovic looked skyward with arms wide open in thanksgiving. For him, his religious beliefs come before the many titles that he’s earned since the beginning of his career.
“This is the most important title of my life, because before being an athlete, I am an Orthodox Christian,” he said in April 2011, when he received the order of St. Sava in the first degree from the hands of Irenaeus, the Patriarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church.
The order of St. Sava is the highest distinction in the Serbian Orthodox Church, and it was given to him especially for having contributed financially to the renovation of religious buildings in his native land, Serbia.
As a faithful Christian who lived out his childhood in a country rife with violent conflict — the war between Bosnia and Herzegovina lasted from 1992 to 1995 — Novak Djokovic has never lost sight of his roots. And this is surely welcomed by his wife Jelena, whom he began dating in 2005, when they attended the same high school in Belgrade.
They took their marriage vows before God in July 2014, and their two children are named Stefan (3 years old) and Tara (4 months old). We can imagine their home would be an excellent school to learn not only tennis, but also generosity.
Stefanos Tsitsipas’s father is Greek. His mother is Russian. And he believes being a product of two disparate cultures is the foundation for his soaring tennis career.
“It was very important that I came from a second background, that I had two different cultures, Greek and Russian, involved in my life,” Tsitsipas said. “It gave me a whole different perspective about things.”
Back in 2015 Stefanos Tsitispas tweeted:
The battle between in the Roland-Garros tournament final between the two Orthodox christians Stefanos Tsitsipas and Novak Djokovic will be broadcast live this Sunday at 16:00 Greek time.
Apostolos Tsitsipas, proud dad and coach of Stefanos, says his son has "taught him so much."