World no.1 Novak Djokovic defeated Nitto ATP Finals alternate Hubert Hurkacz 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-1 in their Green Group encounter on Thursday but the six-time champion has still not qualified for the semi-final.
The dropped set against the Pole, who replaced the injured Stefanos Tsitsipas in Turin, confirmed Jannik Sinner’s place in the last four – making him the first Italian in the tournament’s history to reach that stage.
A very tight first set went the way of Nole thanks to a flawless tie-break, but Hurkacz, who had lost all six previous matches against the Serbian star, made a break in the fifth game of the second and held his advantage to level the match.
Djokovic dominated the decider breaking his rival’s serve twice, in the fourth and sixth games, to seal the win.
Novak will have to wait for the evening match between Jannik Sinner and Holger Rune to learn his fate. The top seed needs Sinner to beat the Dane to progress.
Rune’s victory over the Italian would send him through and eliminate the world no.1.