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Friday, December 9, 2022

Djokovic downs Russian rival to move on in Paris

The Serb beat Karen Khachanov in straight sets in their third-round match

Novak Djokovic continued his pursuit of a record-extending seventh ATP Paris Masters 1000 title with victory over Russia’s Karen Khachanov in the French capital on Thursday.

In what was a fourth meeting this year with Khachanov, Djokovic prevailed 6-4 6-1 to set up a match against Italy’s Lorenzo Musetti in the quarterfinals of the tournament.

Djokovic had beaten Khachanov, 26, as recently as last month on his way to winning the Astana Open, as well as earning wins over the Russian in Dubai and Belgrade earlier in the year.

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Indeed, Khachanov has still only beaten Djokovic once in their nine career meetings – in the final of the Paris Masters in 2018.

Djokovic, 35, won the next edition of the event in 2019 and again last year, having skipped the tournament in 2020, when it was won by Russia’s Daniil Medvedev.  

Djokovic’s winning run at the Accor Arena has now extended to 11 matches, with the 21-time Grand Slam champion taking impressive momentum into the closing stages of the season.

Seeded sixth, Djokovic converted four of the eight break points he earned against Khachanov on Thursday, being broken just once on his serve, during the first set.

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Djokovic had the measure of Khachanov yet again.


©  Julian Finney / Getty Images

Elsewhere on Thursday, there was further disappointment for Russia as number seven seed Andrey Rublev lost his third-round match against unseeded Danish rival Holger Rune, 4-6 5-7.

Rublev, 25, does at least have the comfort of knowing that he has secured a place at the season-ending ATP Finals in Turin later this month.

Rublev was guaranteed his spot following defeats on Wednesday in Paris for Taylor Fritz and Hubert Hurkacz – who were the only two players who could have pipped Rublev in landing one of last two places available at the season finale.

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Russian number one Daniil Medvedev will also compete in Turin, despite his shock second-round exit to Australia’s Alex de Minaur in Paris on Wednesday.

https://ift.tt/opnc37R 03, 2022 at 11:45PM
from RT – Daily news

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