The battle for a place at the ATP Finals, to be held in London from 12-19 November, comes down to the Paris Masters this week. While six slots have already been filled, there are currently seven players participating, who stand a chance to secure the two available berths at the season-ending finals.
From Belgium’s David Goffin to Frenchman Lucas Pouille, who secured his biggest crown of his career on Sunday at the Erste Bank Open 500 to rise eight positions to No. 16 in the ATP Race To London rankings, have a realistic chance to fill the remaining two spots in the finals.
The odds are stacked firmly in the favour of Goffin, who secured two ATP World Tour titles in 2017 and he could clinch the seventh spot in the eight-player competition by reaching the Paris Masters semi-finals. The Belgian, currently, has 2885 points to his name and is placed just below the sixth-ranked Grigor Dimitrov and seventh-ranked Stan Wawrinka on the table.
At Paris, Goffin is slated to play Spain’s David Ferrer, who has a 2-0 head-to-head record over him in the ATP tour matches, in the round of 32
Pablo Carreño Busta and Sam Querrey:
Pablo Carreno Busta, who currently occupies the last London spot, faces French wild card Nicolas Mahut in his second-round match whom he had defeated en route to the US Open semi-finals this year that helped him enter the Top 8 of the ATP Race to London rankings. But, for him, the biggest hurdle will come in the form of Sam Querry, who he is scheduled to face in the Quarter-finals. The meeting seems almost certain as in the second-round action, Querrey meets Serbian qualifier Filip Krajinovic, the World No.77, over whom the current World No. 13 has a 100% winning record. But if surprisingly, Querrey wins and Carreno Busta
Anderson got a bye in the opening round and now opens against the winner of the match between Fernando Verdasco and Andrey Rublev in the round of 32
Juan Martin del Potro:
Juan Martin del Potro, who is at the No. 13 position in the ATP Race To London, maintained his fine run of form following his victory at the Stockholm Open by advancing to the Swiss Indoors Basel finals, in which Roger Federer beat him 6-7(5), 6-4, 6-3 to clinch his seventh ATP World Tour title of the year. Del Potro would have jumped 10 points ahead of Pablo Carreno Busta with a Basel title, but despite the loss, he is still within 190 points of the Spaniard and can guarantee his year-end final berth by winning the title at the Paris Masters. The Argentine begins his Paris campaign against Paolo Lorenzi or qualifier Joao Sousa and is slated to play Alexander Zverev in the Quarter-finals. If he manages to beat Zverev in the Quarters, he is supposed to take on Grigor Dimitrov. Although the stiff competition awaits the eighth-seeded star in the latter phases of the event, with the form that he is in, he has a realistic chance of winning the title and qualifying for the season finale. The conditions for Anderson also holds true for the Argentine as if he manages to falter at the QF stage, he will have to hope that neither of his competitors reaches as far.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who was not even considered as a contender for the finals a couple of weeks back, has turned the table upside down and now stands a chance to secure a place to play his third ATP Finals. The Frenchman lost to his countryman Lucas Pouille in straight sets in the finals of the Erste Bank Open 500 in Vienna, but now has 2,310 points and needs to win the title to gain an entry to the tournament. But the path for him will not be easy at all as he will face David Goffin in the Round of 16 and is slated to face Wimbledon finalist Marin Cilic in the semi-finals. So, it seems unlikely that Tsonga will be able to do it, considering his inconsistent form.