Djokovic edges Federer in classic three-setter in Paris


Karen Khachanov of Russian Federation has reached the final of the Paris Masters after a comfortable straight sets win over Dominic Thiem of Austria on Saturday.

"He is an inspiration to many players and he is a true champion of our sport", Khachanov said of Djokovic, adding that the victory in Paris was "like a dream come true".

Khachanov was enjoying himself, prowling around the court with vigour and going a break up at 6-5 after keeping Djokovic at bay with resolute defence before the Serbian netted when a backhand was sacked at his feet.

Djokovic saved three break points to reduce the deficit to 4-3, but Khachanov did not allow him a sniff of a break back and sunk to his knees to plant a kiss on the court after an errant backhand from the four-time Paris Masters champion secured the upset. "He can really hurt you", Djokovic said.

Novak Djokovic just beat Roger Federer in a three hour epic in Paris. However, the Serb superstar avoided a question about the effects of exhaustion on his Sunday game.

"So all the credit to him".

Russia's Karen Khachanov celebrates his first Masters triumph following a memorable win over Novak Djokovic.

Djokovic will return to No. 1 in the rankings for the first time in two years on Monday, but the Serb will be disappointed at missing out on a 73rd career title, having withstood the best of Federer on Saturday.

"I'm satisfied of course and I'm going to be No. 1 tomorrow officially".

"I'm getting into the season finale with a lot of confidence and feeling good about my game".

"The second thing is after some tough loses against top guys like Rafa in NY, I think they push me to the limit and even to work more harder". I mean, today was Novak, the one who is No. 1 in the world. "I'm just really proud of myself that I could be in this list of winners".

Earning his fourth straight win over a top-10 player this week, Khachanov, whose muscular game resembles that of his childhood hero Marat Safin, a Russian three-times victor in Paris, picked up the biggest title of his burgeoning career.

Although Khachanov denied Djokovic, the opportunity of clinching his fourth Paris Masters title and his record-equalling 33rd, he will be consoled by the fact that he will become the World Number One on Monday, replacing Rafa Nadal, who pulled out of the tournament because of injury. "So maybe it was in the back of my mind".