Third man to the fore

London, March 8

The third man among the Big Three of men’s tennis, Novak Djokovic today set a new landmark of 311 weeks as world No. 1, surpassing Roger Federer. Now Djokovic has his eye on getting past his great rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who both have 20 Grand Slam titles.

The 33-year-old Djokovic, winner of 18 Majors, has time on his side, with Federer turning 40 in August and Nadal turning 35 in June.

“Now that I’ve become the historic No. 1, I’m relieved,” said Djokovic after sweeping to a ninth Australian Open last month, which ensured that he would break Federer’s record. “Now, I’m going to be able to focus mainly on the Grand Slams,” he added.

Djokovic reclaimed the top ranking from Nadal in February 2020 and finished as the year-end No. 1 for the sixth time, tying the mark set by Pete Sampras. — Agencies

Federer focus on Wimbledon

Doha: Ahead of his appearance here, Roger Federer’s comments made it clear that Wimbledon matters more to him than any other tournament. Federer’s last played at the 2020 Australian Open, and has been out of action due to a knee surgery. He has eight Wimbledon titles. The tournament is scheduled to be played from June 28 to July 11. “I know I need to go back to training after here again,” said Federer. “So from this standpoint, it’s still a building up to being stronger, better, fitter, faster and all that stuff. I hope, then, by Wimbledon, I’m going to be 100%, and from then on, then the season really starts for me.”

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