Djokovic close to sealing number one status after Paris title

Sun Nov 2, 2014 12:42pm EST
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By Julien Pretot

PARIS (Reuters) - Novak Djokovic bolstered his hopes of holding on to his world number status until the end of the season with a 6-2 6-3 defeat of big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic to retain the Paris Masters title on Sunday.

The top seeded Serb, who did not drop a set in Bercy on his way to a third title there, tamed seventh seed Raonic's serve throughout a one-sided encounter.

"I played the best match of the entire week today when it was most needed," Djokovic, who has yet to win the French Open at nearby Roland Garros, told a news conference.

His 600th career win extended Djokovic's unbeaten indoors run to 27 and gave him his 20th Masters title while Raonic, who will have to do more than serve big if he wants to climb higher up the ladder, lost his second Masters.

Both players will be taking part in the ATP World Tour Finals from Nov. 9-16 in London, where Djokovic will be favorite to secure the world number one spot for 2014 after he more than doubled his points lead over Roger Federer.

"I see it better now than one week ago, that's for sure. It helps that I won the title in Bercy, that I'm playing well, and that I'm feeling good about myself on the court playing indoors," said Djokovic.

If he performs at the o2 Arena like he did in Paris there appears little doubt he will top the year-end standings for the third time in his career.

Djokovic stole his opponent's first service game as he raced to a 3-0 lead against a nervy Raonic.   Continued...

Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns a shot during his men's singles final tennis match against Milos Raonic of Canada at the Paris Masters tennis tournament at the Bercy sports hall in Paris, November 2, 2014. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier