The battle of the brands will look dramatically different at this year’s Wimbledon Men’s Final.
When Novak Djokovic takes on Kevin Anderson tomorrow, the former will wear Asics shoes and Lacoste apparel, while the latter will sport Lotto. That means Nike and Adidas are officially out of this year’s tournament, which is rare given their recent dominance on court.
Djokovic knocked out Nike-sponsored Rafael Nadal in a thrilling five-set match that ended Saturday morning, while Anderson bested American John Isner, a Fila athlete, in a nearly seven-hour semifinal on Friday.
Djokovic, who previously had a deal with Uniqlo — which recently signed Roger Federer to a blockbuster deal — and also formerly wore Adidas shoes, partnered with Asics for footwear in January.
They have gone above and beyond to ensure the technology is the best and specific to my needs as a player on the court,” Djokovic said in a statement. “The light weight and support structures on the midfoot allow me to move quickly and ensure I have the right stability throughout my performance.”
Meanwhile, the champ, who has seen his ranking fall in the wake of injuries, represents Lacoste for apparel and eyewear. And Djokovic is a key part of the brand’s plans to accelerate its U.S. business as it celebrates its 85th anniversary.
“His visibility and popularity are amazing,” Lacoste’s president and CEO of North and Central America, Jöelle Grünberg, told FN in May. “The story of what is happening to him, of trying to overcome his difficulties, is very similar to the situation we found ourselves in a few years ago. But most people, especially in the U.S., love a comeback story.”
Anderson is giving Lotto Sport Italia, the heritage brand founded in Northern Italy 1973, some huge exposure this week.