Novak Djokovic confirms he will skip Paris Masters next month

Novak Djokovic has confirmed he will not defend his Paris Masters title in the French capital next month because he has no points to win as he bids retain the world No 1 spot come the end of the season.

Djokovic, who won the tournament last year, will not lose any points for skipping the event because the ATP Tour’s revised ranking system due to the Covid-19 pandemic allows players to retain points from last year.

The Serb clinched a record 36th ATP Masters crown when he won the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome last month, surpassing Rafael Nadal, who confirmed he would enter the Paris Masters after winning his 13th French Open title on October 11.

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“I won’t play in Paris as I can’t add to my points tally but I will go to Vienna and London,” Djokovic told Wednesday’s edition of Belgrade daily Sportski Zurnal.

“I can win up to 500 points in Vienna as I didn’t play there last year and there are also a lot of points available in London.”

Nadal, who equalled Roger Federer’s record haul of 20 Grand Slam titles when he blew Djokovic away in the French Open final, has not entered the tournament in Vienna but is expected to take part in the ATP Finals in London.

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Asked if he was content to allow Nadal to catch up with him in the Masters race, Djokovic said: “It’s not my priority. My immediate task is to collect as many points as I can in a bid to put as much distance between myself and the chasing pack ahead of next season.

“I want to go down in history as the world No 1 with the most weeks at the top of the ATP Tour and I will do all I can to make it happen.

“Whether Nadal plays in Paris or not changes nothing because it’s all in my hands.”

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