It’s been a fantastic season for Andy Murray.
The Scotsman won his seventh title of the year with victory in Vienna on Sunday, and closed in on Novak Djokovic at the top of the world rankings.
Murray has been in fine form in recent weeks, with victory in Austria his third title in as many weeks, adding to the Wimbledon title and Olympic Gold medal he has already picked up this year.
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This means that he will become world number one if he wins this week’s Paris Masters and Djokovic fails to make the final.
Djokovic, though, is in defiant mood after losing in the semi-finals in Shanghai a fortnight ago, a tournament that Murray eventually won.
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The 29-year-old has finished four of the last five years at the top of the world rankings, and hopes to hold onto the title in Paris.
The Serbian completed the career Grand Slam in France earlier this year, winning the French Open in June, but his form has suffered since.
He lost early on at Wimbledon and at the Olympics in Rio, while he was defeated by Stanislas Wawrinka in the US Open final.
"It makes me want to go on court and fight for every point because there is something to win at the end," he said.
“I have been in these particular situations before in terms of ranking, so I know what to do, and I just keep things very simple.
“I felt a little bit exhausted, I must say, and maybe less motivated. So I had to kind of rediscover that feeling of being on the court and keep pushing myself.
"I guess it took a little bit of time, more time, and I'm in a better state of mind at the moment than I was some months ago.”
Murray, on the other hand, has been in superb form this year, winning 52 of his past 56 matches, and beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in straight sets to win the Erste Bank Open in Vienna on Sunday.
"You've got to give him credit for what he's done in the last three or four months - the second part of the year is quite incredible," Djokovic added.
"He's playing maybe the best tennis he's ever played, very consistent, very strong. He definitely deserves to be in the position of being number one at the end of the year. But that doesn't just depend on him."
Murray will hope to take the number one spot in Paris, but Djokovic will certainly be putting up a fight.
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