Paris Masters: Karen Khachanov defeats Novak Djokovic in final

ATP Paris Roger Federer impresses against Kei Nishikori. Djokovic next

Novak Djokovic defeated Roger Federer on Saturday in a Paris Masters semi-final that he described as "one of the best matches" between the long-time rivals to extend his winning run to 22 outings.

Khachanov, at 22 another of the sport's brightest prospects, took ruthless advantage of the 21-year-old German's physical struggles as Zverev, battling with shoulder trouble, needed a medical time out in the first set at 4-1 down.

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.

Karen Khachanov of Russian Federation (R) with the winners trophy alongside runner up Novak Djokovic of Serbia after the final.

He's never met an opponent as often Novak Djokovic, whom he plays for the 47th time in the Rolex Paris Masters semi-finals.

Khachanov, who beat Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-1, won the Kremlin Cup in Moscow last month for his third career title. I want to talk about how well he played all week and he absolutely deserved to win the match today. At times tonight, I was playing really well.

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He then made the most of a third break point in the third game of the second set with a running forehand victor, before holding his nerve to serve out the match.

Thiem joined Djokovic and Federer in the Nitto ATP Finals field when Kei Nishikori lost on Friday.

Federer was seeking to become only the second man after Jimmy Connors to win a century of professional tour titles following his 99th win in Basel, only to fall agonizingly short.

Djokovic rattled off six successive points to bring up five match points, clinching victory at the third attempt when Federer picked out the net to end a tense concluding rally.

The four-time victor of Paris title having reigned in 2009 and 2013-15, will return to the year-end top spot for a fifth time in the ATP Rankings tomorrow. Federer hit his second double fault of the match as he collapsed in the tie-break, allowing Djokovic to take the win when Federer netted a forehand.

But World No 18 Khachanov, a victor at the Kremlin Cup in Moscow last month, hit back in the very next game as Djokovic dragged a forehand into the tramlines, down break point. "And I told him to tell him to keep it down a little bit because he was going a little bit too much over the edge". But already established player, top player.

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