Sporting Luxury: The Watches That Tennis Stars Wear, From Roger Federer to Serena Williams to Novak Djokovic - Lifestyle Asia

One tennis champ wears a $775,000 watch during a match, while another went to MET Gala with a $1,000,000 diamond timepiece.

Tennis superstar Novak Djokovic is the new ambassador for luxury Swiss timepiece brand, Hublot.

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“I am very excited to join a brand that appreciates sports and athletics and supports our profession and invests in us athletes,” he says in a GQ interview.

Already in the works is a performance watch that Djokovic can wear during matches, something he’s never had before.

The partnership also includes a “personalized limited-edition series” of watches, which the tennis champ will design himself.

Meanwhile, as planned, Djokovic wore the brand’s Big Bang Meca-10 ceramic blue off the court in the U.S. Open tournament.

This marks the first time in about two years since the Serbian tennis champ represented a watch brand. That’s a considerably long time, given the longstanding presence of watches in the sport and Djokovic being one of the best ambassadors a timepiece maker can have.

The 34-year-old athlete, after all, is already a GOAT contender with 85 career ATP titles, including a joint-record 20 Grand Slams.

But like Djokovic, many of the sport’s top athletes also front campaigns with new watch models or limited-edition releases on their wrists. Here’s a look at some of them.

Roger Federer

The Swiss tennis player is a long-time ambassador of Rolex. On many occasions, he has been photographed wearing a timepiece from the Swiss watchmaker while lifting championship trophies.

Recently, he wore a Rolex classic, the Oyster, which is the world’s first waterproof wristwatch—a timepiece that’s just as iconic as his storied 20-year career.

But his most memorable Rolex has to be Datejust II (price), which he wore in 2009 when he beat Pete Sampras’ all-time Grand Slam record.

Rafael Nadal

The year 2010 marked the beginning of Nadal’s partnership with Richard Mille. To this day, the Spanish tennis player wears a number of timepieces from the Swiss watchmaker.

During the Barcelona Open last April, he won his record 12th title in the tournament against Stefanos Tsitsipas while sporting an RM27-04 Tourbillon model ($775,000). It only weighs 20 grams but can withstand 10,000 Gs of g-force.

Serena Williams

In 2014, Audemars Piguet, a favorite among Premier League footballers, named Williams as a brand ambassador. She has since been wearing the watchmaker’s timepieces—on and off the court.

The American tennis player—a 23-time Grand Slam winner—regularly sports watches from the brand’s Oak series. During her quarterfinals match against Romania’s Simona Halep at the Australian Open last February, she wore a black dial Royal Oak Offshore Diver ($36,000) on a rubber strap.

Most notably in 2017, Audemars Piguet lent Williams the Diamond Outrage ($1,250,000) for her attendance at the MET Gala. The one-of-a-kind, all-diamond piece has a total of 48 18-karat white gold spikes designed to mimic icicles.

Nestled in the midst of these spikes is a secret watch in a gemstone-encrusted case which, when lifted, reveals a mirror-polished dial.

Naomi Osaka

As the first Asian woman to hold the number one position in singles and the first Japanese player ever to win a singles Grand Slam—the US Open in 2018—it’s no surprise that Osaka was tapped as a brand ambassador by luxury watchmaker Tag Heuer.

In a promotional post announcing the partnership, the athlete wore a variety of watches, including an Aquaracer ($3,350).

At the US Open, where she lost the chance for a 10th straight tournament win to the 19-year-old Filipino-Canadian Leylah Fernandez, Osaka walked into the court wearing what looks like a Link Quartz Watch ($5,500).

Dominic Thiem

Ranked fifth in the world, Thiem—winner of 17 ATP singles titles including the 2020 US Open title—only has the best watches from his official timepiece partner, Rolex.

He favors the Daytona Chronograph ($19,000) off-court, just before his matches. The Austrian also wears a stainless steel Submariner ($12,000) while he’s away from competing to attend to a wrist injury.

Ashleigh Barty

Barty has been part of Rado’s lineup of athletes since 2017. The Australian tennis player, who has five WTA singles titles and nine WTA doubles titles under her belt, is the only player in the world currently ranked in the top 10 in both singles and doubles.

Prior to her mixed doubles bronze medal win at the Tokyo Olympics, the 23-year-old athlete also won at Wimbledon. While basking in her victory, she was seen wearing the limited-edition HyperChrome Ashleigh Barty watch ($4,300). The full-white timepiece—only one of 123 made—has a mother-of-pearl dial and a bezel set with 56 diamonds.

In her most recent win, the Western and Southern Open, she was pictured wearing a True Thinline ($3,000).

Alexander Zverev

Zverev, formerly with Richard Mille, is now supported by Rolex.

The German champ—who won multiple titles including the end-of-the-year ATP Tour Finals in 2018,  four ATP Masters 1000 tournaments, and the 2021 Tokyo Olympics singles gold medalist—recently sported a black-dial Cosmograph Daytona ($15,900) in a promotional post on Instagram.

Shortly after, he was seen wearing an Oyster Perpetual (at least $5,900) in blue before a practice session at the US Open. It’s the same timepiece the watchmaker gifted the athlete when he was welcomed to the family last June.

Belinda Bencic

Rolex is also the official watch sponsor of Bencic, the youngest player in more than 15 years to reach the US Open quarterfinals at age 17.

After recovering from injuries, she returned to competition and won two US Open titles. Her most recent feat was at the Tokyo Olympics, where she won the singles gold medal.

During the awarding ceremony, the Swiss player wore a two-tone Daytona with black dial ($26,650).

Later, Rolex gifted her with an Oyster Perpetual Datejust ($7,200) with a congratulatory message engraved at the back of the watch.

Banner Photo from @rolex on IG

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