John Isner, Alex de Minaur and Others Make Bold Predictions For Novak Djokovic Ahead of Australian Open 2021

Published 01/20/2021, 4:01 AM EST
Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates winning a point during his final singles match against Rafael Nadal of Spain during day 10 of the ATP Cup at Ken Rosewall Arena in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)


Amid the raging debate on ‘GOAT’ in men’s tennis, some top stars have made their predictions on who is going to finish as Numero Uno at the end of the 2021 season. Apart from clinching his 17th Grand Slam title last year, Serb superstar Novak Djokovic also finished the season as the Word Number 1.

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Novak Djokovic inches away from 7th year-end #1 finish

In the process, he recorded the 6th #1 finish of his career, putting himself at par with the legendary Pete Sampras. And it is Djokovic again, who is likely to top the rankings at the end of this season, if the consensus among top stars, including American Frances Tiafoe, veterans Fabio Fognini and John Isner, Austrian David Goffin, and future superstars Alex De Minaur, Matteo Berrettini and Hubert Hurkacz is anything to go by.

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Apart from being in the race for the most Grand Slam titles along with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, and potentially leaving them in his slipstream should he win all 4 Majors this year, Djokovic is an arm’s distance away from some career milestones.

Federer and Nadal currently top the tally for most Grand Slam titles in the men’s game, with 20 trophies apiece. However, the Serb, at 33, could, by many estimates, go past his peers and set his own mark before he is done.

Djokovic in the race for most Grand Slam titles with 17

While the Grand Slam race is still very much on, with Djokovic being the trailing rival jockey aiming for a photo finish, the Serb is chasing other goals that seem to be more realistic at this point.

He is just 9 weeks shy of beating Roger Federer’s record of spending 310 weeks as the top-ranked player. The Serb became only the second man in tennis history to complete 300 weeks as World Number 1 on December 21st, last year.

PARIS, FRANCE: Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns a backhand in his semi final match against Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria on day 6 of the Rolex Paris Masters, part of the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 held at the at AccorHotels Arena in Paris, France. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Djokovic, who currently leads Nadal by 2,180 points in the ATP rankings, and will leapfrog Federer if he can stay as the top-ranked player till March 8th, 2021.

Djokovic eyeing 9th Australian Open title this year

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The Serb will also upstage Sampras and set the record for most career year-end #1 finishes if he can close this season as the top-ranked player.

Djokovic is also inches away from his 9th Australian Open title this year, which will put him alongside the iconic Martina Navratilova for the highest number of Grand Slam titles won at a single event.

Navratilova won 9 of her 18 Grand Slam titles at Wimbledon. Djokovic fans would dearly hope that the prediction of his peers rings true at the end of this season.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

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Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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