Andy Murray is looking to close the points gap to world number one Novak Djokovic and cap a career-best season by topping the rankings for the first time.
Murray defeated Grigor Dimitrov to claim his fifth title of the year at the China Open. That feat took him to 1,000 points closer to Djokovic’s long-held number one spot.
The Scot made a convincing start to that campaign in Beijing, storming through the tournament without dropping a set.
“It’s very positive leading into Shanghai, and hopefully I can finish the year strong,” Murray said in Beijing.
Djokovic, who won the Open last year, could not defend his crown, having pulled out with an elbow injury. But both are playing at this week’s Shanghai Masters.
The Serb also won in Shanghai last year. That was another trophy in what was one of the best seasons in tennis history. And now he has to defend those ranking points whereas Murray only has points to bank to further reduce the 3,005-point gap.
In a year that also saw him become a father for the first time, Murray bagged both his second Wimbledon crowns and Olympic gold medals.
He also reached the final of the Australian and French Opens. But he missed out on a second consecutive Davis Cup win when Great Britain lost to Argentina in the semi-finals.