Novak Djokovic forehand Australian Open

Novak Djokovic: How he could lose world number one spot in coming weeks

Novak Djokovic is in danger of losing his world number one spot in the coming weeks, but just how likely is that to occur and who can take it from him?

No player, male or female, has spent more time at the top of the world rankings that Djokovic.

Las week he surpassed the previous record held by Steffi Graf when he completed a 378th week at world number one.

AT least one top analyst has suggested we can expect him to reach the 400-week milestone, but he is vulnerable to being toppled in the next few weeks.

Why is Novak Djokovic vulnerable to losing the world number one spot?

It comes down to his decision to remain unvaccinated against Covid-19, which was also the reason he lost it in 2022 as well.

Djokovic has had huge conviction in his decision and has always been happy to accept whatever consequences come with it.

One of the main ones is not being allowed to enter the US, with America stubbornly maintaining their vaccination requirement longer than most.

That will change in May, but that will come too late for Djokovic to play the Sunshine Double of Indian Wells and Miami.

He did apply for a vaccination exemption but it was rejected, leaving him out in the cold and vulnerable to losing his world number one spot.

Who can become topple Novak Djokovic as world number one?

There are actually two players who can surpass Djokovic in the rankings after Miami, but it won’t be easy.

Carlos Alcaraz, who was the year-end world number one but has been restricted by injury in 2023 so far, is one of them. The other is Stefanos Tsitsipas.

However, before Djokovic fans start getting too worried, it’s highly unlikely it will happen for either.

Both Alcaraz and Tsitsipas would have to win both Indian Wells and the Miami Masters to displace Djokovic at the top of the rankings, and we all know how tough it is to win the Sunshine Double.

Who has won the Sunshine Double before?

Only 10 players have won the Sunshine Double before, although three of them have done it multiple times.

It also hasn’t been done since 2017, so it’s clearly becoming tougher.

Djokovic himself has won it four times, and Roger Federer on three occasions. Steffi Graf is the other multiple Sunshine Double winner. We are talking about probably the three most dominant players in tennis history there, which shows what an achievement it is.

The other players to have won it are Jim Courier, Michael Chang, Pete Sampras, Marcelo Rios, Andre Agassi, Kim Clijsters and Victoria Azarenka.

Players to win the Sunshine Double

Player Titles Years
Jim Courier 1 1991
Michael Chang 1 1992
Pete Sampras 1 1994
Steffi Graf 2 1994, 1996
Marcelo Rios 1 1998
Andre Agassi 1 2001
Roger Federer 3 2005, 2006, 2017
Kim Clijsters 1 2005
Novak Djokovic 4 2011, 2014, 2015, 2016
Victoria Azarenka 1 2016


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Michael Graham, Editor, has been a professional sports journalist for his whole career and is especially passionate about tennis. He's been the Editor of for over 5 years and loves watching live tennis by visiting as many tournaments as possible. Michael specialises in writing in-depth features about the ATP & WTA tours.