Djokovic Wins Paris Masters to Set Year End Number One Showdown in London
Novak Djokovic won his 5th Paris masters title this weekend, defeating a nervous Denis Shapovalov 6-3 6-4 in a routine final. Djokovic, despite being under the weather for most of this week, went the whole tournament without dropping a set, showcasing his prowess on indoor hard courts.
This title means that although Rafael Nadal, having made the semi-finals of Paris before withdrawing, returns to World Number One this week, Djokovic will still have the chance to end the year as World Number One with a good performance at the World Tour Finals. Djokovic is only 645 points behind Nadal and will have a shot at regaining the World Number One spot if he makes the final in London, and Nadal does not. Nadal can guarantee his World Number one spot if he makes the final in London, regardless of whether Djokovic managed to win the tournament or not.
Also playing in London are Federer, Medvedev, Thiem, Tsitsipas, Zverev and Berrettini. Zverev and Berrettini qualified this week in Paris having performed just well enough to earn the necessary points. Gael Monfils and Roberto Bautista Agut will be this year’s alternates. Djokovic looks the favourite to win the World Tour Finals this year but will face stiff competition from the likes of Federer and Thiem, who both recently won indoor hard-court titles in Basel and Vienna respectively.
Rafael Nadal, having picked up an injury in Paris, is a doubt for the tournament but has been known to withdraw from smaller tournaments to preserve his body for bigger ones, which is perhaps what he is doing here. Nadal is not necessarily a favourite to win this tournament, having never won it and traditionally performed poorly in London due to it’s fast court speed and the fact it takes place at the back end of the year.
Written by Emre Saridogan