Novak Djokovic congratulated his "brother" Karen Khachanov following the Russian's Zhuhai win. On Tuesday, Khachanov defeated Yoshihito Nishioka 7-6 (2) 6-1 in the Zhuhai final. For Khachanov, it was his first ATP title since the 2018 Paris Masters.
"It was a long wait but it was worth it! This win is for my wife and my sons. Missed this feeling! Super happy," Khachanov captioned his Instagram post. In the comment section, Djokovic wrote: "Bravo Brate (brate in Serbian means brother)."
Khachanov wins his first title since beating Djokovic in 2018 Paris
In 2018, Khachanov won three ATP titles and that season he capped off his year by landing his first Masters title in Paris.
Back then, Khachanov stunned Djokovic 7-5 6-4 in the Paris Masters final. "It means the world to me. I couldn't be happier to finish the season like this," Khachanov said at the time. After shockingly losing the 2018 Paris Masters final, Djokovic was full of praise for Khachanov's final performance and also for the Russian's entire week in the French capital.
"I want to talk about how well he played all week. He absolutely deserved to win the match today. So all the credit to him. He deserves it. He's a young player up and coming. But already an established player, a top player. And he showed great quality today and he showed why we're going to see a lot of him in the future.
I'm satisfied of course and I'm going to be No 1 tomorrow officially. What more can I ask for? I mean, I won 20-plus matches in a row and had a most amazing last five months of the year," Djokovic said after losing to Paris final to Khachanov.
Five years later, Khachanov finally lifted an ATP title again. In Zhuhai, Khachanov played well throughout the entire tournament as he dropped just one set in his four matches en route to winning the title.
• Lleyton Hewitt applauds Jannik Sinner for backing up his play against Novak Djokovic• Impossible but true: there is still a milestone far away for Novak Djokovic• 'Novak Djokovic was right about Jannik Sinner,' Alex de Minaur admits• Novak Djokovic's ex-coach shades Jimmy Connors' all-time title record• Feliciano Lopez issues very interesting response to Novak Djokovic's DC criticism• Hamad Medjedovic reveals how Novak Djokovic's influence was decisive for him