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 Paris Masters: Novak Djokovic beats Marton Fucsovics on singles return

Paris Masters: Novak Djokovic beats Marton Fucsovics on singles return


Novak Djokovic hits a return against Marton Fucsovics in the Paris Masters
Top seed Djokovic is going for a record-extending sixth Paris Masters title

Novak Djokovic marked his return to the singles court with a hard-fought win in his Paris Masters opener against Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics.

Djokovic was given a tough test by Fucsovics but his class shone through.

The Serb will play Adrian Mannarino or Gael Monfils in the third round.

After winning alongside compatriot Filip Krajinovic in the Paris doubles on Monday, Djokovic returned to the more familiar surroundings of the singles court after being given a first-round bye.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion took an extended break after the emotional defeat by Medvedev in New York, where Djokovic was left in tears when his dream of becoming the first man in more than 50 years to win all four majors in the same season was ended.

On his return against 40th-ranked Fucsovics, Djokovic started sharply and looked relatively at ease despite not having played competitively for almost two months.

But Fucsovics fought back in the second set, varying his service game and posing more problems for Djokovic as a result.

After seeing off a break point to hold for 1-1, Fucsovics took Djokovic’s serve in the next game and that proved decisive as he forced a decider.

Djokovic broke for 4-2 in the third set as Fucsovics’ serve wavered and the top seed’s delight at coming through a stern test was evident as he celebrated victory.

French pair Mannarino, 33, and Monfils, 35, meet in the second round on Wednesday for the right to face Djokovic, who is aiming to finish 2021 as the year-end men’s number one for a record seventh time.

British number one Cameron Norrie is also back in action on Wednesday as he continues his efforts to qualify for the season-ending ATP Finals in Turin later this month.

Norrie, seeded 10th, is involved in a tight race for one of the remaining places in the eight-man tournament and must beat American Reilly Opelka when they meet – at about 14:00 GMT – to keep his hopes alive.



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