The battle for No. 1 ramps up at the Paris Masters where Novak Djokovic is fighting hard to track down Rafael Nadal. But both advanced.
Djokovic overwhelmed Kyle Edmund 7-6(7), 6-1 for his 50th win of the year.
“I was feeling energy-wise better and felt more alert, just more strength, more energy, more speed. I didn’t play so well, I think, from baseline in the first set. I served well. That got me to the tie-break,” Djokovic said.
“Second set was the best set I’ve played so far in the tournament. Finished off with a winner, finished off with amazing return game. So of course the sensation is very positive. And I’m convinced that I’m headed in the right direction so that tomorrow will be even better.”
The victory puts Djokovic in the quarterfinals against Stefanos Tsitsipas. The Greek ended the hopes of Alex de Minaur 6-3, 6-4.
“Obviously he’s one of the best players in the world. He’s already an established player. He’s all-around player, plays very well on all surfaces,” said Djokovic who lost to Tsitsipas in Shanghai.
Nadal won his 19th in 22 tries over Stan Wawrinka with a convincing 6-4, 6-4 victory over the Swiss.
“My serve worked well and the volley, too. I have been going to the net a couple of times, serve and volley. I think I have been focused and tried to hold the serve during the whole time,” said Nadal, who won all 10 of his net points.
“I think my game worked well. On the return today, was a little bit difficult. I think I didn’t return as well as I was doing previous days… But it’s true that Stan always has a good serve and difficult to read. So an important victory for me, honestly, against a tough opponent again.”
Nadal now meets home favorite and former champion Jo-Wilfried Tsonga after the Frenchman saved two match points in a win over beat Jan-Lennard Struff 2-6, 6-4, 7-6(6).
“These matches make you improve. When you play the best, it’s always beneficial and it’s not important whether you win or lose. When you play Rafa in the first round, it’s a problem. If you play Rafa in the quarter-finals, it’s normal,” Tsonga said. “Of course, it’s better for me to meet Rafa in quarter-finals after having played a few matches rather than during the first round.”
Nadal leads 9-4 over Tsonga.
Also, Gael Monfils moved to within one win of returning to the ATP Finals after beating Radu Albot 4-6, 6-4, 6-1. If Monfils beats Denis Shapovalov in his quarterfinal tomorrow, he’ll overtake Matteo Berrettini for the last spot in London.
Grigor Dimitrov dominated Dominic Thiem 6-3, 6-2. He’ll get Cristian Garin who ousted Jeremy Chardy in three sets.
FRIDAY PARIS INDOORS SCHEDULE
Court Central Starts At 2:00pm
Cristian Garin v Grigor Dimitrov
(1) Novak DjokovicV v (7) Stefanos Tsitsipas
Not Before 7:30 Pm
Denis Shapovalov v (13) Gael Monfils
Not Before 8:30 Pm
(WC) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v (2) Rafael Nadal
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