Novak Djokovic may never beat Roger Federer’s record for the most consecutive weeks as the top-ranked men’s tennis star. Djokovic has enjoyed huge success in his career and this year became the most decorated Grand Slam player of all time.
Winning the Australian, French and US Opens, Djokovic took his tally to 24 Grand Slams this year. The Serb jumped two ahead of long-term rival Rafael Nadal.
He also leapfrogged Wimbledon nemesis Carlos Alcaraz in the ATP world rankings. Djokovic has now spent a record 398 weeks as the World No 1 over the course of his career. The retired Federer, second in the list of total weeks at No 1, has 88 weeks fewer than Djokovic.
But there is one record of Federer’s that Djokovic seems unlikely to match. The Swiss icon has spent the most consecutive weeks at the top of the rankings than any other player in history.
Federer reached an incredible 237 consecutive weeks as the World No 1, before losing the spot to Rafael Nadal in August 2008. Djokovic has a long way to go before he can match Federer’s run.
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The veteran overtook Alcaraz in the ATP rankings on September 11, meaning he has only spent nine weeks in the top position. He needs to go the equivalent of over four years without being overtaken to beat Federer’s feat.
At 36 and with the likes of Alcaraz constantly improving, it seems unlikely that Djokovic will ever go 238 consecutive weeks at No 1. Remaining above Alcaraz will involve a busy schedule built around continuing to win the majority of tournaments he competes in.
Djokovic has set his sights on becoming the year-end’s top-ranked star, which he can do by winning one match at the ATP Finals.
“For me, the biggest goal right now is to end the season as the No 1 player in the world, so hopefully I can clinch it. I need one win, so hopefully that happens,” Djokovic said in Turin. “And then of course, I would love to win the tournament as well. But that’s the goal and then let’s see what happens afterwards.”
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He added: “I also love competing, I love the sport. That’s my greatest motivation really, because I’ve made a lot of records, I’ve broken a lot of records and it’s great.
“But even if I leave professional tennis now and reflect on everything I’ve done, I can be extremely, extremely satisfied. So I don’t have pressure to keep on competing, but I still have desire and still have the level.
“I’m playing at a very high level, so records are there as a huge inspiration as well, no doubt, and history of the sport. I still want to create my own history and history of tennis and see how far I can go.”
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