This is what needs to happen for Andy Murray to become world number one

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Andy Murray has made it one step further toward his ambition to become the top tennis player in the world this afternoon with a win over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at Vienna's Erste Bank Open.

The British number one has enjoyed spectacularly good form in 2016, taking his second Wimbledon and Olympic titles respectively, and seeing off fierce competition to secure wins in a string of other tournaments, including the Shanghai Masters and China Open.

(Ronald Zak/AP)
Tsonga has now won just two of the pair's last 16 matches against one another (Ronald Zak/AP)

Murray is now tantalisingly close to gaining the coveted status as number one in the world - a feat that has so far eluded the much-loved Scot since his first grand slam win at the US Open in 2012.

In order for Murray to achieve his dream, he now needs to secure a win at next week's Paris Masters without the current world number one, Novak Djokovic, reaching the final.

(Andy Wong/AP)
Novak Djokovic still stands in the way of Murray's dream, but the Scot could edge in as world number 1 if he secures a win in Paris next week (Andy Wong/AP)

Alternatively, Murray could enjoy the same position if he were to reach the Paris final with Djokovic falling before the semi-finals.

Murray has now racked up seven titles this year - a career best - and lost just three matches since the French Open in June.

(Ronald Zak/AP)
Pushing for the win: Murray dug deep to avoid a second-set scare in Vienna (Ronald Zak/AP)

"The last few months have been very good," said Murray on atpworldtour.com.

"I think I played my best tennis today of the tournament. Jo fought well and started playing a lot better. He was more aggressive and taking some more chances and making the shots."

Despite a bitter year of near-wins for France's Tsonga, the resiliently positive runner-up applauded Murray's efforts at the presentation ceremony, saying: "Next week he has the chance to be number one. I hope it will be the case, except if I play against him in Paris."