Novak Djokovic’s iconic racket is sold at auction and the price exceeds all expectations

Kevin Palmer
Novak Djokovic's 2016 French Open winning racket is up for grabs
Novak Djokovic's 2016 French Open winning racket is up for grabs

Novak Djokovic’s iconic racket from the 2016 French Open Final has been sold at auction and the price confirmed it was one of the most valuable pieces of tennis memorabilia of all-time.

Djokovic needed to win the French Open to complete a career Grand Slam and cement his legacy as one of the greatest players of all time.

His win against Great Britain’s Andy Murray in the final in Paris often hailed by Djokovic as one of the most significant victories of his career, but he didn’t keep the racket that secured him a place among the tennis greats.

Fred Perry, Don Budge, Roy Emerson, Rod Laver, Andre Agassi, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer were the only players to win a career Grand Slam of all four major titles until Djokovic claimed the missing piece of his jigsaw in 2016.

Instead, he threw it into the Roland Garros crowd and it was caught by lucky spectator Abby Doherty.

“It was all in slow motion. He just flung it into the crowd,” said Doherty. “I had an “Oh my God” moment because it was coming right toward us.

“It hit my hand and it was deflected to the ground. I sprinted to it and put my foot on the racquet and grabbed the handle. I held onto it real tight.

“After the match, I ran down to the place where he exited the court. I wanted to get him to sign it, but I was unable to get his attention.”

She has kept the Head racket in her possession for the last few years but decided to cash in on her prized possession and now the final price for the Djokovic frame has been revealed.

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The racket has been put up for sale on the SCP auction site, with an expectation that it would sell for a fee in excess of $50,000.

It turned out that the estimate was wildly under-valuing the racket, with the final sale price of $107,500 ensuring the fans who had the lucky catch on that famous day in Paris is set for a very special Christmas.


The final figure is believed to be the third-highest sum spent on a single tennis racket, just behind the $139,700 spent on Rafael Nadal’s 2022 Australian Open racket which he used to win a then-record 21st Grand Slam and the $125,000 paid for Billie Jean King’s wooden racket from her famous ‘Battle of the Sexes’ match against Bobby Rig in 1973.

The most lucrative sale of tennis memorabilia came when Roger Federer put a large collection of his rackets and clothing up for sale to raise money for his foundation in 2021.

With all money from the sale going to the Roger Federer Foundation, estimates on lots that included rackets and clothes the great Swiss icon wore for some of his Grand Slam wins were smashed when they went under the hammer at Christie’s in London

In total, 19 lots were on offer in the first action that included the clothes and racket he wore in his only French Open win and rackets and clothes from his numerous Wimbledon triumphs. Incredibly, those lots were sold for a combined total of £1,329,375 ($1,687,136.60).

An online auction of smaller items worn by Federer that included sweatbands also went under the hammer, with a stunning £2,099,750 ($2,665,182) raised in that sale.