Cameron Norrie relishing first Novak Djokovic meeting after late call-up drops ATP Finals debut

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 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Cameron Norrie is relishing the chance for a first career meeting with world No1 Novak Djokovic at the end of his breakout season.

Norrie was brought in as a second alternate into the ATP Finals on Wednesday when Stefanos Tsitsipas pulled out injured.

Hours after his calling up, the British No1 raced into a first-set lead against Casper Ruud only to lose 1-6, 6-4, 6-4 to effectively end his hopes of making it through to the knockout stages in Turin.

On facing Djokovic, who has yet to drop a set in the group stages, on Friday, Norrie said: “I can’t wait. I have never played Novak before or practised with him so it is a first time for me. I am looking forward to it.

“I was watching him today and he is firing and really feeling the ball well. He is really good in these conditions. The court is quite quick. It is going to be difficult but I am going to see if I belong and can compete with a guy like that.”

As the second alternate – Jannik Sinner had already been brought in for an injured Matteo Berrettini – Norrie said he had not expected to play in the tournament.

But instead he used his time to practise ahead of spearheading Britain’s Davis Cup ambitions later this month.

“I was using it as a training block heading into the Davis Cup so it is a bonus to get a couple of matches in here,” he said. “It is huge for the experience. This week has been incredible for me so far.

“I enjoyed every second out there and I was feeling good in practice and was ready to play and compete. I came out firing and loved the match. It just came down to a couple of games in the second and third sets. I was really happy with my level.”

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