Carlos Alcaraz has suffered a shock first round defeat at the Paris Masters leaving his hopes of usurping Novak Djokovic for the year-end No.1 title in tatters. Djokovic was heading into the Paris and ATP Finals tournaments with a 500 point lead over the young tennis sensation.
The two were filmed sharing a hit and a chat in Paris ahead of the tournament, but Alcaraz has made it no secret he wants to finished as the year-end No.1. However, the Wimbledon champ has seen his chances of overtaking Djokovic dwindle after his sensational loss to Roman Safiullin in straight sets in Paris.
Djokovic will need to reach the finals in Paris to maintain his points after losing to Holger Rune last year. A Djokovic victory in Paris would see him end the year as World No.1.
The current World No.1 does have to make a push in both tournaments to secure the title with 1,500 points available in Turin. Alcaraz has struggled with form since the US Open with a number of early defeats impacting his season.
The 21-year-old suffered a shock loss to Grigor Dimitrov in Shanghai, before he withdrew from the Swiss Indoors tournament due to injury. Djokovic was taking a break after his US Open triumph, before competing in the Davis Cup win over Spain.
Djokovic's time away from the tour handed Alcaraz a chance to make-up ground in the race. Although the Spaniard had faltered. And fans were left stunned at Alcaraz's recent form having now lost in the round of 32 and round of 64 in back-to-back tournaments.
Safiullin has now defeated Alcaraz, Alexander Zverev and Andy Murray all in the past few weeks to continue his brilliant form towards the end of the season.
Roman Safiullin beats Carlos Alcaraz in straight sets.
Biggest win of his life.
Unreal performance that won’t be forgotten any time soon.
— The Tennis Letter (@TheTennisLetter) October 31, 2023
— FirstSportz Tennis (@FS_Tennis1) October 31, 2023
I have now attended two Carlos Alcaraz matches:
2022 Montreal - First round loss to Tommy Paul
2023 Paris - First round loss to Roman Safiullin
— Bastien Fachan (@BastienFachan) October 31, 2023
What is going on with Alcaraz? I missed this one today.
— Infinitedraught (@infinitedraught) October 31, 2023
Woah. Ok this one is the shocker of the day and there’s no close second!
— ThisGuyKyHasAI (@NoVaxAllFacts) October 31, 2023
Carlos Alcaraz backs year-end No.1 charge
Alcaraz had the opportunity to gain ranking points on Djokovic at the China Open and in Shanghai. But the Spaniard lost to Jannik Sinner in the quarter-final in China and Dimitrov a stage earlier. He has remained upbeat about taking over Djokovic, but it is now down to how the Serbian performs in Paris and Turin.
Alcaraz had spoken in Paris ahead of the tournament about his desire to win back the title after the ATP Finals. "Obviously it's on my mind. I said, I practice with a goal, I practice to be a better player. And I practice to find a way to beat him," Alcaraz said to Eurosport this week.
World No.1 🤝 World No. 2
Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz training 𝘁𝗼𝗴𝗲𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿 ahead of the Paris Masters! 😍 pic.twitter.com/kwXS8E2quS
— Eurosport (@eurosport) October 29, 2023
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