Djokovic breaks Nadal record & equals Sampras as ATP Finals line-up is confirmed

Novak Djokovic officially became the oldest year-end No. 1 in the history of men’s tennis, while he equalled Pete Sampras’ record for the most seasons finished as the world’s top-ranked player.

Djokovic, 33, is 11 days older than great rival Rafael Nadal was when he set the record a year ago. The pair are also third and fourth respectively in the all-time golden oldies list.

Only Sampras (6) has finished a season as world No. 1 as many times as Djokovic, with Nadal, Jimmy Connors and Roger Federer all achieving the feat in five separate calendar years.

Djokovic, the 17-time Grand Slam champion, has Federer’s long-standing record for most weeks at world No. 1 in his sights next. He can pass the Swiss great on March 8, 2021 if he stays on the top of the pile.

Nadal’s decision not to compete in the Sofia Open ensured it was mathematically certain that Djokovic would end 2020 as the top-ranked player but the Spanish world No. 2 did enjoy a victory of his own on Friday night.

He fought back from a set down against compatriot Pablo Carreno Busta to win 4-6 7-5 6-1 to reach the semi-finals of the Paris Masters for the fifth time.

Oldest year-end ATP world No. 1

33 – Djokovic, 2020
33 – Nadal, 2019
31 – Djokovic, 2018
31 – Nadal, 2017
29 – Lendl, 1989

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