Novak Djokovic guarantees another week at number one with 18th straight win over Gael Monfils
Novak Djokovic has made certain that he will enjoy a record-extending 369th week atop the ATP rankings after consigning Gael Monfils to more misery in their rivalry.
Coming into their second round encounter the Frenchman had lost all 17 of their career ATP tour meetings stretching all the way back to 2005.
Now, that streak is at 18, as Monfils became the first player to lose 18 matches in a row to the same player in ATP history, Djokovic winning 6-3, 6-2 this time around.
The world number one told Prime Video after the victory: “I’m still finding my form, the groove.
“But I’m very happy with the win today, I think Gael [Monfils] is always a tricky player to play against.
“He gets every ball, you know you always have to be ready for an extra ball coming back to you.”
Djokovic was in trouble of losing his status as world number one should he have lost to Monfils, with the injury absent Daniil Medvedev the one to benefit should that have happened.
Ironically, Monfils was the one who handed the top spot back to Djokovic when he defeated Medvedev at Indian Wells back in March when the Russian was atop the men’s ladder.
But Monfils could not do the favour for Medvedev on this occasion.
When asked if his 17-0 record over Monfils helped going into the match, Djokovic said: “Knowing that you have a perfect winning record against your opponent of course helps a bit mentally.
“But at the same time every tournament, every surface, every year is different.”
Next up, the three-time Madrid champion will take on either Denis Shapovalov or old rival Andy Murray in what would be their first meeting for over five years.
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