Paris: It’s been quite a year for Novak Djokovic, who is driving towards another year-ending No.1 spot, recently becoming a proud father and winning his third Paris Masters crown for his 600th ATP victory.
The popular 27-year-old Serb said at the beginning of last week that becoming a dad had already made him feel like number one, but he is also doing his talking on the court, breezing through an elite field in the French capital without dropping a set.
His 6-2, 6-3 victory over big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic on Sunday (Monday in Manila) emphasized his dominance in world tennis, but there is still one tournament to go at the season-ending World Tour Finals in London.
His lead over Roger Federer in the ATP rankings is now 1,310 points with up to a possible 1,500 available to the winner in London.
Federer can also pick up a small amount of points when he plays the Davis Cup finals for Switzerland against France in Lille but it might be too late by then with Djokovic the man to beat heading to London.
“Two successive titles in London in the last two years gives me reason to believe that I can do well,” said Djokovic after his 27th consecutive indoor victory and becoming the first man to successfully defend the title at Bercy.
The other players to qualify are Federer, Stan Wawrinka, Andy Murray, Kei Nishikori, Tomas Berdych, Marin Cilic and Raonic.
The players are split into two pools of four with a round-robin format determining two semifinalists from each group.
Djokovic says he is prepared for whatever the draw throws up in terms of opponents.
“It’s the best eight players in the world in the whole year, so there are not many preferences to be honest.
The Belgrade native also paid tribute to 17-time Grand Slam winner Federer’s fine season that has seen the Swiss win more matches than anyone on Tour as he rose back to world number two.
“He is one of the top contenders to win all the major titles and to compete for the top spot,” continued Djokovic.
“Obviously he got used to the racquet change and I think he’s swinging through the backhand shot much better now. He improved his game a lot since last year.
“I think maybe he’s playing some of the best tennis of his career, in my opinion, and I don’t think age really matters in his case.
“But every match that I play, every match that I play and win, gets me closer to holding number one at the end of the year.”