22-year-old Russian Karen Khachanov defeated Novak Djokovic in straight sets in the final of Paris Masters to lift the biggest title of his career.
Khachanov, who most recently won the Kremlin Cup, needed just an hour and 39 minutes to see himself through to the victory. He won the match 7-5, 6-4 to be crowned as the champion.
The Russian appeared to be in an imperious form from the very beginning of the match. Even though he lost his serve at 1-2 in the first set, he quickly bounced back in the next game to make things even at 2-3 on his service.
He stayed even with Djokovic for most of the set. In the penultimate game, however, Khachanov sensed an opportunity to take the first set and landed himself a break point. At 6-5, he served for the first set and eventually won it to further add to Djokovic’s woes.
In the second set, the Serbian fought bravely to come back into the match. However, Khachanov’s resilience proved to be too much for him as the current Cincinnati Masters champion was broken at 1-1 to go down early in the set.
On his part, Nole did all he could to save the break point but on the third attempt, he finally succumbed to Khachanov. Now a game up, all the Russian had to do was to protect his service. At 4-2, he almost broke Djokovic’s service once again. However, the Serbian saved three break points in that game to stay in the match.
Djokovic tried hard to find a break but Khachanov was absolutely determined to hold on to his service. At 5-4, he served for the championship and soon, he won the Paris Masters on back of a sensational performance.
The Russian’s performance in Paris has been nothing short of a dream run. He defeated the likes of John Isner, Alexander Zverev, and Dominic Thiem to reach the final. With that superb win over Djokovic, he is now even at 1-1 in the head to head tally with the Serb.
Even though Djokovic failed to win the tournament, he can seek comfort from the fact that he will once again be the World No. 1 from the coming week. He is also a leading contender for the ATP World Tour Finals to be played in London soon.