Novak Djokovic is the no. 1 of number ones | Staff writer

Novak Djokovic Novak Djokovic is the no. 1 of number ones • World number one may still seek to play in China

• Spaniard Rafael Nadal expected to replace him Rafa Nadal celebrates winning the French Open this year. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Novak Djokovic is the no. 1 of number ones and Rafael Nadal will be the next who will usurp him. The first three weeks of the season had seen no fewer than 17 different number ones, but Nadal moved closer to deposing the Serb in the world rankings.

The 31-year-old will climb into the top three on Monday, a week after he beat his friend Roger Federer in the US Open final and put an end to the American’s two-year reign as world number one.

Nadal has been steadily working his way back to his best this season and his win over Federer had the world tingling with anticipation that he could replace Djokovic as number one. The Spaniard has been at the top of the rankings before, having taken over the mantle from Djokovic in 2008.

It seems only a matter of time before Nadal takes over. Djokovic told BBC Radio: “Every time I hear I’m the no. 1 of no. 1 it feels very special and it’s a little bit bizarre. Especially when you see the history of the sport and all the number ones of the game, Novak is the number one of no. 1s of the tennis player in our sport, but that doesn’t mean much.

“Obviously Rafa deserves it, has earned it. He’s beaten me now twice in slams. He had a very solid, confident approach to my particular situation this year. And I’m happy that he’s not just cruising through matches like I was. He’s worked really hard.

“Like Rafa has always shown, when you start to play well, everything starts to come together.”

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