Rafael Nadal rejects Sofia wildcard to ensure Novak Djokovic record-equalling milestone

Rafael Nadal has refused a wildcard for the Sofia Open, ensuring Novak Djokovic the year-end world number one.

Djokovic beat Borna Coric in Vienna on Wednesday, and that win will be enough as long as Nadal does not enter Sofia to boost his own rankings points.

However, according to Sport Klub, Nadal has rejected the advances of the Bulgarian event.

It will be the sixth time Djokovic has won the year-end world number one – a record he will share with his idol Pete Sampras.

Djokovic, meanwhile, was forced to work for his win by Coric before eventually carving out a 7-6 (11-9), 6-3 win.

“The first set he served with high quality and precision,” Djokovic told the press in Vienna.

“I played a little bit passive in the first set and I think he was dictating the play,”

“I’m pleased with my serving in both sets, especially the second. I started swinging through the ball better and playing better.

“I was there, I was fighting and I was waiting for chances when they were presented.”

The first set saw Djokovic extend his outstanding tiebreak record this year to 13-1.

“I guess the more tiebreakers you win the more confidence you have,” he admitted.

“Coming into the tiebreak I think that mental edge and optimistic approach, knowing that you have a great record, it helps.”

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