The Spaniard's loss of form was apparent coming to the tournament, having lost back-to-back matches in his last two events of the regular season. Alcaraz's form took a turn for the worse when he fell in three sets to Alexander Zverev in his debut match in Turin.
But his performances and results have picked up and comfortably ended up topping the group thanks to wins over Andrey Rublev and Daniil Medvedev. Having looked like a player in dire need of the off-season, Alcaraz has summoned his best tennis just when it mattered.
And there is no bigger match in men's tennis right now than the world's top two players locking horns at the year-end championships. That's the situation at the moment, and the overriding factor is that Alcaraz will head into Saturday's clash full of confidence.
Jim Courier and Nick Kyrgios who have been calling the matches from the TV booth for Tennis Channel have noted a striking improvement in Alcaraz's level this week which couldn't have been more timely.
Former No. 1 Courier believes Alcaraz will be tough to beat if he plays the way he did in his past couple of matches, and reckons he might gain some ground in the No. 1 ranking since he has no points to defend at next year's Australian Open.
"I think the confidence that he's starting to show is really important when he's doing everything well, he's my favorite player to watch, no doubt about it. But his confidence had dipped. There's no question about that after the US Open hadn't quite found his swagger."
"But this week, maybe it's starting to come back. It's important to kind of stick the landing at the end of the year and go into the next season with some momentum. Remember last year he missed Australia. He got injured just beforehand, so he's got a chance to gain some ground in that No. 1 ranking maybe wrestle it back from Novak. If he can bring this level of tennis tomorrow, it would be tough to beat."
Kyrgios, who has been enjoying his stint on commentary duties, has been giving some valuable insights. Knowing Djokovic's extraordinary qualities, the Australian star is tipping the Serb to come out on top, but reckons he'll have to "force" the issue.
"Jim raised all the good points, but I think for Novak...Novak's gonna have to, you know, not be so defensive. I think tomorrow he's gonna have to try and force the issue a little bit. I think if he sits back and lets Alcaraz use that forehand, you know, bring him forward, drop shot and then get the crowd involved. I don't I don't think it's gonna look good for Novak."
"I personally think Novak will win. I'm gonna tell you my prediction now, but I think Novak is going to try out and force the issue, stand up on the court redirect with the backhand, and keep Alcaraz guessing."