- Alexander Zverev defeated Novak Djokovic in the last match of the ATP Tour Finals on Sunday.
- The victory was Zverev’s greatest in his entire career.
- In beating Djokovic, the 21-year-old destroyed the greatest men’s tennis statistic in 2018.
- Before Sunday’s final, Djokovic had a winning head-to-head record over every single man in the ATP’s top 10 list of the best players in the sport.
- But Zverev’s win pulled him square. He is now the only athlete in the top 10 without a losing record against the world number one.
Alexander Zverev destroyed the greatest men’s tennis statistic of 2018 when he beat Novak Djokovic on Sunday.
Djokovic had been enjoying incredible form up until the last match of the ATP Tour Finals.
Since winning the 2018 Wimbledon Championships in July, Djokovic won three ATP events and even defeated Roger Federer in one of the greatest tennis matches of the year earlier this month.
Heading into Sunday’s match against Zverev, Djokovic was expected to win yet another title.
Djokovic had been on an awesome winning run, and an earlier ATP Tour Finals group stage win over Zverev meant he had winning records over every top 10 ranked man on ATP’s list of the best players in world tennis.
Simply put, ahead of the weekend Djokovic was tipped to win whenever he faced a top-ranked player because history showed that more often than not, he left the court with a victory.
But Zverev ripped up the form book, torched the script, and destroyed Djokovic’s incredible feat.
Yes, Zverev beat Djokovic to win the ATP Tour Finals title, but the victory will have tasted even sweeter as the 21-year-old is now the only top 10 ranked men’s player to not have a losing record against the sport’s 14-time Grand Slam champion.
See below for the ATP top 10 men’s players, together with their percentage of wins scored against Djokovic:
- Novak Djokovic
- Rafa Nadal – 48% wins against Djokovic
- Roger Federer – 47% wins against Djokovic
- Alexander Zverev – 50% wins against Djokovic
- Juan Martin del Potro – 21% wins against Djokovic
- Kevin Anderson – 11% wins against Djokovic
- Marin Cilic – 11% wins against Djokovic
- Dominic Thiem – 29% wins against Djokovic
- Kei Nishikori – 12% wins against Djokovic
- John Isner – 18% wins against Djokovic
Zverev has only faced Djokovic four times, but with two wins each, the honours are now even.
And his most recent win was the best of the lot.
“This is the biggest title of my career so far,” he said, according to the official ATP website. “This trophy means a lot, everything, to all the players. I mean, you only have so many chances of winning it. You play against the best players only. How I played today, how I won it, for me it’s just amazing.”
The win was perhaps more impressive as he was beaten by Djokovic 6-4, 6-1 in a group stage match, but rallied to beat Isner, Federer, and then sought his revenge against Djokovic in the final.
“It’s quite astonishing, winning this title, beating two such players back-to-back, Roger and Novak, in semi-finals and final,” Zverev said. “It means so much. I’m incredibly happy and incredibly proud of this moment right now.”
Aside from the Davis Cup final, the tennis season is over. This means Zverev will break from the sport and return when the 2019 ATP Tour begins.
Only time will tell whether he will continue to prove a thorn in the side of the world’s number one player. But if the above data is anything to go by, he has a better chance than any of the top players in tennis.
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