Novak Djokovic. (AFP Photograph)
The latest success of youthful gamers on the boys’s tour factors to an “inevitable” shift on the prime of the ATP rankings, stated world primary Novak Djokovic.
The final 4 ATP Masters 1000 occasions — essentially the most prestigious tournaments outdoors the Grand Slams — have been gained by gamers outdoors the ‘Massive Three’ of Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.
Russian Daniil Medvedev, 25, gained the ATP Finals and the Paris Masters titles final yr and has already displaced Spaniard Nadal from second spot.
Hubert Hurkacz, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev have gained the three Masters occasions this yr with Greek Tsitsipas the youngest of them at 22.
Djokovic, 33, instructed reporters on the Rome Masters on Monday that the outcomes confirmed there was a generational shift underway.
“There are guys like Tsitsipas, Zverev, (Matteo) Berrettini, (Andrey) Rublev which might be successful in opposition to all of us and enjoying lots and constructing their rating factors,” he added.
“Medvedev as nicely, in fact, and difficult for the highest spots. Dominic Thiem has been there for a few years.
“It is inevitable that it’ll occur. The change on the boys’s rankings, prime of the rankings is coming. Whether or not it’ll occur in a month or a yr or no matter, I do not know.”
For Nadal, the success of the youthful gamers was regular however the Spaniard was not prepared but to write down off his possibilities at Roland Garros, the place he has gained 13 main titles.
“I do not like to cover the reality,” Nadal stated on Tuesday. “We’re not enjoying as many tournaments as we did earlier than. It is regular that after virtually 20 years on the tour there may be one other technology that’s successful tournaments.
“We’ve been reaching virtually each single necessary occasion for the final 19 years. Nothing unusual. 100% prepared to simply accept that. However I will maintain combating for issues.
“That signifies that in three weeks, two weeks-and-a-half, there may be one other Grand Slam that I prefer to play. I will battle to attempt to play nicely there.”
Whereas the 39-year-old Federer missed many of the final 14 months on account of knee issues, Djokovic handed his report for essentially the most weeks as world primary in March.
However the Serbian, who has gained 18 Grand Slam titles, is extra centered on chasing down the 20 main wins of Federer and the 34-year-old Nadal.
“I am not personally paying an excessive amount of consideration anymore to the rankings as a lot as I’m to my sport for the Grand Slams,” he stated. “These are the most important focus tournaments proper now at this stage of my profession.”
Djokovic has made modifications to his schedule to spend extra time together with his household and since his Melbourne win has solely performed the Monte Carlo Masters and an occasion at dwelling in Belgrade.
He’ll wind up his preparations for the French Open with this week’s Rome Masters and one other ATP occasion in Belgrade.
“4 tournaments earlier than French is I feel sufficient by way of the match play,” he stated. “So I am constructing my health and I am constructing simply my sport slowly step-by-step in an effort to peak in Paris. That is positively the place I need to play my greatest.”