Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev learn potential routes to defend and steal World number one spot
There could be a new World number one next week as both Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev are competing at different events, although both have been handed difficult draws.
After being deported from the Australian Open just one day before it began, 20-time Grand Slam champion World number one Djokovic will make his first appearance of the year at the Dubai Tennis Championships.
Meanwhile, Australian Open finalist and World number two Medvedev will compete at the Mexican Open in Acapulco.
Both events are ATP 500 events so the duo will earn the same share of points based on their progression.
Djokovic currently sits 1,240 points ahead of Medvedev, thus meaning Medvedev can overtake the Serbian legend should he either match or better his counterpart’s results.
Djokovic has been drawn against Lorenzo Musetti in his opening fixture and should he overcome the 19-year-old Italian, he will face either Karen Khachanov or Alex de Minaur who are both around 30th in the World.
Should the Serbian progress to the quarter-finals, he will likely have to play one of Marin Cilic or Roberto Bautista Agut, both hard-to-beat seasoned professionals.
He could then face in-form World number nine Felix Auger-Aliassime in the semi-finals and any one of Andrey Rublev, Hubert Hurkacz or Jannik Sinner in the final. Three of whom are currently in the World’s top ten, whilst Hurkacz is 11th.
On the other side of the World in Mexico, Medvedev has been drawn against Benoit Paire. Whilst his draw may be slightly more favourable, there are still some notable names that could prove difficult opponents.
Should the Russian progress to the semi-finals, he could potentially face World number six Matteo Berrettini or now 21-Slam titlist Rafael Nadal in a replay of the historic Australian Open final.
Nadal would also be looking to extend his perfect start to 2022 after winning the Melbourne Summer Set and the ‘Happy Slam.’ He is currently 10-0 for the new year, but would be 13-0 by the time he faces Medvedev.
If Medvedev reaches the final, he may be in line to face Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev, Carlos Alcaraz or Cameron Norrie, who are all on the other side of the draw.
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