Djokovic hails 'perfect 5 months' as he targets ATP Finals glory

Rex Christensen
November 10, 2018

The conditions at the season finale in London are expected to be slightly heavier, but being indoors, with the elements not playing a part, the setting is ideal for Federer's precisely directed weaponry.

The 31-year-old looked tired in his defeat to the Russian big-hitter Karen Khachanov in the Paris Masters final, but there is no denying that he is back to his sliding, defending, counter-punching best.

The 37-year-old has won a record six titles at the ATP Finals - including two in London - but has not lifted the trophy since 2011.

Anderson cut a dignified and relaxed figure as he met the media at Friday's pre-tournament media day.

The season-ending tournament kicks off in London from November 11 to 18 and will see the likes of Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev, Kevin Anderson and more all take part.

"But that's never a given because best-of-three-set matches indoors, the margins are slimmer and it can slip fast".

Along with Juan Martin delPotro, the Japanese star was tipped to be one of the guys that would eventually break the stranglehold that Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray had on the men's game for so long. He reached his first ATP Masters 1000 final in Toronto, and won his first title in Stockholm, as well as reached the fourth round at Wimbledon.

"It's tough to have to face Federer in the opening match, but I hope to give it my all".

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"Being (ranked) number one is probably the ultimate challenge in our sport and the pinnacle of the season", Djokovic, voted by his fellow professionals as the Comeback Player of the Year, told reporters.

"It's extra special this season because of the whole journey I've been through the past 15 months, particularly the last eight months, after surgery in February". I just feel 10 years in one place is a bit too much. Reaching his maiden Grand Slam final at the French Open this year, losing to Rafael Nadal, he comes into this event with a 2-4 win-loss record in London.

The 30-year-old's opponents in the Guga Kuerten group for the round-robin stage are world number one Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev and John Isner.

"It means a lot to be here", Isner said. "I won that tournament, here I played the semis and I needed someone of Novak's calibre to beat me, so that's all right".

"I'm really happy. It's not easy to come here".

Anderson is the other debutant and will become the first South African in 23 years to grace the season-ender.

Nishikori has been drawn into "Group Lleyton Hewitt" alongside Federer, Kevin Anderson and Dominic Thiem. Articles appear on for a limited time.

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