Djokovic in Paris Masters quarters
PARIS – Novak Djokovic celebrated his return to the summit of world tennis with a stroll into the quarterfinals at the Paris Masters yesterday as outclassed Damir Dzumhur had to retire with injury in the second set of their third-round clash.
The Serb, who learnt on Wednesday that he would be back as world number one next week following Rafa Nadal’s withdrawal from the tournament through injury, was leading 6-1 2-1 when the Bosnian submitted to a back problem that had flared up in the first set.
Djokovic extended his winning streak to 20 straight matches and equalled a personal record of 29 consecutive completed sets won as he maintained the remarkable spell of form that has seen him rise from number 22 in June to the top of the game again. Dzumhur, committed and courageous on the Bercy arena’s central court, suffered a tweak to his lower back when 4-1 down in the opening set.
Clearly in pain, he battled on in an 11-minute sixth game which eventually saw him broken for a second time and, though he continued after receiving physio treatment in a time-out and taking pain-killers, there was no way back.