Paris Masters: Novak Djokovic wins, Daniil Medvedev reacts to boos after loss

Novak Djokovic serves against Tomas Martin Etcheverry at the Paris Masters
Novak Djokovic, who claimed three of the four majors this season, has won 47 of his 52 matches in 2023

Novak Djokovic began his bid for a record-extending seventh Paris Masters title with a fluent display in his first singles match in over six weeks.

Serbia's Djokovic, who had not played since a Davis Cup match on 15 September, won 6-3 6-2 against Argentina's Tomas Martin Etcheverry.

The 24-time major champion will face Tallon Griekspoor in the last 16.

Third seed Daniil Medvedev appeared to raise his middle finger to the crowd after he lost to Grigor Dimitrov.

Medvedev, 27, reacted to being booed by the French fans having eventually buckled against the Bulgarian, who took his seventh match point to clinch a 6-3 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (7-2) win.

The jeers towards Medvedev started when he flung his racquet in the second set and he refused to continue until the boos stopped, leading to a time violation from umpire Renaud Lichtenstein and a subsequent argument.

Asked about the gesture as he walked off court, the former world number one said: "I just checked my nails, it's nothing more than that. Why would I do that to this beautiful crowd in Paris?"

The Russian's defeat means the two leading seeds behind Djokovic are already out, with Spanish second seed Carlos Alcaraz suffering a shock exit against 45th-ranked Roman Safiullin on Tuesday.

Djokovic, 36, further boosted his chances of finishing above Alcaraz as the year-end number one with his winning return to the tour.

Having not played a tour-level singles match since lifting the US Open title on 10 September, Djokovic looked sharp throughout against world number 31 Etcheverry.

Djokovic, showing his usual precise hitting and athleticism, won three of seven break points and saved the only one he faced.

Dimitrov avenges Medvedev defeat, while Tsitsipas progresses

Daniil Medvedev shushes the crowd at the Paris Masters
Daniil Medvedev, who lives in France and speaks French fluently, had some spiky exchanges with the crowd at Paris' Accor Arena

Six days ago in Vienna, former world number three Dimitrov was beaten by Medvedev having also led by a set.

This time the 32-year-old thwarted another comeback from the 2021 US Open champion in a dominant deciding tie-break.

Greek seventh seed Stefanos Tsitsipas moved a step closer to securing his place at the season-ending ATP Finals in Turin with an impressive win over Canada's Felix Auger-Aliassime.

Serving well under pressure to save six of seven break points, 25-year-old Tsitsipas secured a 6-3 7-6 (7-4) success to reach the last 16.

Tsitsipas will next play Germany's Alexander Zverev, who it was reported on Tuesday has been charged with assaulting an ex-girlfriend,

Zverev saved 11 break points before France's Ugo Humbert took his next two chances to level the match and move a break up in the decider.

But 27-year-old Zverev fought back to seal a 6-4 6-7 (3-7) 7-6 (7-5) win after three hours and 28 minutes.

Poland's Hubert Hurkacz became the first man since 2019 to hit 1,000 aces in a single season as he beat Spain's Roberto Bautista Agut 6-3 6-2.

Australia's Alex de Minaur progressed by beating Serbia's Dusan Lajovic 4-6 6-4 6-4 in what was the 200th win of his career.

Murray misses out on Turin & Skupski splits with Koolhof

British doubles player Jamie Murray saw his hopes of reaching the ATP Finals ended by a second-round defeat in Paris.

Murray, 37, and New Zealand's Michael Venus, who are ninth in the race with the top eight qualifying for Turin, lost 6-4 6-3 to Mexico's Santiago Gonzalez and France's Edouard Roger-Vasselin.

Meanwhile, Britain's world number three Neal Skupski is looking for a new partner for the 2024 season after Dutchman Wesley Koolhof ended their successful partnership.

The pair won the Wimbledon title earlier this year and could still finish the season as the world's best pair, but Koolhof has decided to team up again with his former partner Nikola Mektic of Croatia.

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