ATP Rankings: Who will finish the year as top-ranked player?
Daniil Medvedev is set to enter the US Open as the top-ranked player in the ATP Rankings. However, the top spot would be up for grabs in New York, with five players vying for it. Spanish ace Rafael Nadal is the favorite to become the new world number one. The likes Stefanos Tsitsipas, Carlos Alcaraz, and Casper Ruud are the other contenders.
Why does this story matter?
- As per ATP, Nadal (5,630) could claim the top spot in the ATP Rankings for the first time since February 2, 2020.
- The Spaniard will not defend any points at the 2022 US Open since he did not feature in the 2021 edition.
- Medvedev (6,885), who won the 2021 US Open, would drop the 2,000 points he is defending ahead of the impending edition.
A look at the possible scenarios
According to ATP Live Rankings Points (as of August 29), Nadal will have a 590-point lead over Alexander Zverev, who has opted out of the US Open due to an ankle injury. Medvedev would follow the duo with 4,885 points. In this case, Medvedev, Tsitsipas, Alcaraz, and Ruud would need to reach at least the US Open final to take the top spot.
Alcaraz could script history
Alcaraz, who defeated Tsitsipas at the 2021 US Open, has an opportunity to enter the record books. The former could attain the number one sport on the ATP Rankings on September 12. If he does so, he will become the youngest top-ranked player in the ATP Rankings. Alcaraz will then break the record set in November 2001 by Lleyton Hewitt as a 20-year-old.
What about Casper Ruud?
Casper Ruud, who has been on a roll of late, can become the first Norwegian to become world number one in ATP Rankings history. The 23-year-old has claimed three titles this year, all on clay courts. Ruud is 38-15 in the season.
Nadal eyes the top spot
Despite losing in Cincinnati, Nadal has an incredible record of 35-4 in the season. He won the Australian Open and the French Open. The Spaniard last held the top spot in the ATP Rankings in February 2020. He first became the world number one in August 2008. Nadal remains the only man to attain the top spot in three decades.
Nadal has defied all odds this season
In January, the Spaniard defied all odds to win the Australian Open. He broke a tie with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in terms of Grand Slam titles. Nadal then went to claim a record-extending 14th Roland Garros title. Although injury marred his plight at Wimbledon, the 36-year-old was ruthless en route to the semi-finals. He could finish the year as the top-ranked player.