Murray to face Verdasco in Paris opener

And the Spaniard, who has a reputation for faltering at the last, then played a awful game to hand Murray the victory.

"When he was behind in games and even when I was getting the return back, he was dictating the points on his forehand and backhand".

Andy Murray closed in on the No. 1 ranking by winning his third straight ATP title at the Erste Bank Open on Sunday. "I don't feel any differently now to how I did six, eight weeks ago".

The Serb will lose his position if he fails to reach the final of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) Masters 1000 event and closest rival Andy Murray wins the title in the French capital.

Djokovic needed four set points before claiming the opener, with the Serb then breaking at 4-all in the second to extend his Paris winning streak to 16 matches.

Djokovic won in Toronto but lost early at Wimbledon and the Olympics, and was beaten in the US Open final by Stan Wawrinka. "It's a real pleasure to come back to Paris after what I did at Roland Garros this year", said Djokovic, who completed the career Grand Slam with his French Open triumph earlier this year.

"I mean, to me, it's all amusing and it's all, in the end of the day, people can say and judge and do whatever they want, so I'm not gonna give any room for speculations anymore".

Murray can become No. 1 if he wins the tournament and Djokovic does not reach the final.

With the score 4-4 and 30-40, Muller sent down a strong serve that Djokovic returned powerfully. The German missed last month's Shanghai Masters and is not required for this week's Paris Masters, with spiritual guru and Spanish former player José "Pepe" Imaz filling the empty chair. "But when you have one coach who is there and another who's not around, I find it's much better to have the one that's on site as the one communicating with me".

However, Roberto Bautista Agut's London bid ended as the Spaniard squandered three match points before going down 2-6, 6-1, 7-6 (8/6) to Gilles Simon.

The three-time Grand Slam champion took just over two-and-a-half hours to seal a three-set triumph on the hard court.

Also, 13th-seeded Lucas Pouille rallied past Feliciano Lopez 6-7 (1), 6-3, 6-4 to reach the third round while Jack Sock beat sixth-seeded Dominic Thiem 6-2, 6-4.

Belgian Goffin is still in the hunt after beating Nicolas Mahut 7-6 (9/7), 6-2, while 2008 Paris champion Jo-Wilfried Tsonga cruised past Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-3, 6-4.

"I'm not sure if it's good or not".

  • Marlene Weaver