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Novak Djokovic scored the 1,000th match win of his illustrious career Saturday, joining an exclusive group of men’s tennis players.
Djokovic’s 1,000th win came via a 6-4, 6-3, triumph over Casper Ruud in the semifinals of the Italian Open in Rome.
Per SportsnautDjokovic is only the fifth man in history to win the equivalent of 1,000 ATP Tour matches, joining Jimmy Connors (1,274), Roger Federer (1,251), Ivan Lendl (1,068) and Rafael Nadal (1,051).
The 34-year-old Djokovic has been a professional since 2003, and during that time he has established himself as one of the most successful tennis players of all time.
Djoker is the current No. 1 player in the world, and he has spent no shortage of time in the No. 1 spot since first ascending to that level in 2011.
His 20 career Grand Slam singles titles rank second all-time behind only Nadal, who has won 21.
After winning three of the four Grand Slam titles last year, Djokovic did not get the opportunity to repeat as Australian Open champion earlier this year.
Since Djokovic is not vaccinated against COVID-19, he was not permitted to play in the Aussie Open, but he will face no such obstacles when it comes to the remaining Grand Slams this year.
The next Grand Slam on the schedule is the French Open, which will begin later this month and run into June.
Djokovic is a two-time French Open champion, including last year when he beat Nadal in the semifinals before getting past Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final.
The Serbian star is tuning up for the French Open as part of the clay-court season, and winning the Italian Open could go a long way toward establishing him as the French Open favorite over Nadal.
On Sunday, Djokovic will go for the Italian Open title and his 1,001st career win when he takes on Tsitsipas.