Roger Federer admitted he was starting to think about the all-time record for Grand Slam victories after claiming his 12th at the US Open on Sunday.
Federer, 26, beat Novak Djokovic 7-6 (7-4) 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 in the final and is now two Grand Slam victories from equalling Pete Sampras on 14.
“I think about it a lot now,” he said. “To come so close already at my age is fantastic – I really hope to break it.
“I don’t know (how many I can win). I hope more than Pete.”
Federer became the first man since Bill Tilden in the 1920s to win four US Open titles in a row, but he had to come from a break down in all three sets against 20-year-old Serb Djokovic.
“I played well when I had to,” said the Swiss, who had to save seven points in total. “I’ve played better matches no doubt.
“A lot of pressure for both of us. He made it hard for me in the beginning. All in all, I’m happy with my performance.”
The world number one revealed that he still feels the affect of nerves, despite his extraordinary success.
“I’ve had an upset stomach the last few days, I’ve been nervous, shaking, had cold hands before the match, I’ve had it all,” he said.
“I’m supposed to be the experienced guy who has got used to the situation but you never do get used to it.”
Djokovic was honest in his assessment of the match, saying he was “mentally weaker” than Federer at the key moments.
“I think at the important moments,” he said, “especially in that first set when I served at 40-40 and I had the wind behind me so I was in a good position, everything was good and suddenly I started making these unforced errors, which were really not understandable.
“Then I was quite nervous, there was a lot of pressure and I knew that I have to make some shots.
“Obviously that was a mistake and I just had to calm down and wait for my chances. I made a lot of first-shot unforced errors in that game, I think that was pretty crucial.
“I think I was weaker mentally on the important points and he was mentally stronger. So that was my mistake and my weakness today.
“It’s normal, it’s a bad day, in general looking at the whole US Open I’ve been performing really well. Today I had a lot of chances, I didn’t use them.”
And the world number three took some positives from his impressive fortnight in New York.
“Looking at the situation it was a first Grand Slam final for me, 23,000 people and everybody expected a nice match,” he said.
“I had quite a lot of pressure but on the other hand I enjoyed it, it was an amazing experience.”