Rafael Nadal is set to move to the top of the men's tennis rankings on Monday, but he was beaten by rival Novak Djokovic in the final of the China Open on Saturday, BBC News reported.
Djokovic's victory on Saturday is his fourth win at the China Open and he told reporters that it was important for him to win against Nadal.
I wanted to win against Nadal, who has been the best player so far in 2013. It's important for my confidence."
Despite his defeat, Nadal will still move to the No.1 spot on Monday. Nadal's advancement to the final round of the China Open and the retirement of Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic both paved the way for the Spaniard's climb to the top. Nadal has said that moving into the top spot is personally satisfying because of all the work he has put into achieving the ranking.
It sure is special be back to the top position of the rankings after more than a half year without playing tennis. I worked hard every day with the right attitude I think, and because of that, I am today in this situation. I am number one today, but it's not [assured] for the end of the season. I won't go to sleep tonight feeling that I am the best player of the world . . . I played a very compete season, and that's why I am the best in the rankings today."
Achieving the coveted No.1 status has been a surprise to Nadal, who suffered a shocking second-round loss at Wimbledon in 2012 and missed seven months of competing due to a knee injury. Nadal has come back strong this year, however, winning two major championships to bring his total to 13.