Rafael Nadal withdrew from the Paris Masters on Wednesday on account of an abdominal injury he incurred earlier in the tournament. This also casts a doubt on his chances of playing in the year-end ATP World Tour Finals in London.
The Spaniard has had a remarkable season so far. He has retained his position as the World No. 1 throughout the year, backing it with five singles titles. Of these, his most notable feats were the Monte-Carlo Masters, Roland Garros, and Barcelona Open.
However, owing to his withdrawal in Paris now, he will lose the No. 1 spot to Novak Djokovic on Monday. This also makes the Serbian the only player since 2000 who started the season outside of top 20 and moved on to become the World No. 1. The last player to achieve this feat was Marat Safin.
Tennis fans were in store for another disappointment. Former World No. 3 Milos Raonic too pulled out from Paris Masters due to an elbow injury. He was set to face Roger Federer in the second round but owing to his withdrawal, the Swiss has received yet another bye into the third round.
Federer will now face Fabio Fognini in his opener in Paris. Meanwhile, Djokovic will be up against Damir Dzumhur in the third round. Additionally, Grigor Dimitrov and Marin Cilic will also go head to head in the same bracket.
Nadal, who was set to meet Fernando Verdasco in the second round, has been replaced by the lucky loser Malek Jaziri.
In other news, fourth-seeded German Alexander Zverev is through to the next round after defeating Frances Tiafoe 6-4, 6-4. Jack Sock also achieved the same feat after edging past his French adversary Richard Gasquet in straight sets.
Eighth seed John Isner faced some resistance against the Kazakh Mikhail Kukushkin, but he managed to defeat him in three sets to see himself through to the third round.