Djokovic, Halep named 2018 ITF world champions
World number ones Novak Djokovic and Simona Halep were named as the 2018 ITF world champions. The governing body of global tennis honored the two stars, who ended 2018 as the number one ranked. Serbian Djokovic received the honor from the International Tennis Federation for the sixth time. Meanwhile, this was the first for Romania's top-ranked Halep.
Djokovic had a stunning 2018 campaign. Besides winning the Wimbledon, US Open 2018 and the Cincinnati Masters, the Serb sealed the Shanghai Masters as well. Djoker missed out on the year-ending ATP Finals trophy, after losing to Alexander Zverev in the summit clash. A few months ago, Djokovic was ranked 22nd. He has orchestrated a magnificent comeback.
According to the AFP, Djokovic said, "I am very honoured to be named ITF world champion again. "I am particularly proud of this achievement after all that I've been through physically this year, but part of me always believed I could make it back."
Meanwhile, Halep also enjoyed Grand Slam success in 2018,. The Romanian claimed her maiden Slam title at Roland Garros. Prior to that, she also reached the final at the Australian Open. A lower back injury forced her to miss out on the year-ending WTA Finals. The Romanian ace sustained a herniated disc while being involved in a training session before September's Wuhan Open.
"It's a great honour to be named as ITF world champion for the first time. I had an incredible year, winning my first Grand Slam at Roland Garros and finishing the year as world number one," said the world number one.
The ITF goes by an objective system that considers all results during a calendar year. Although, it gives special weight to the Grand Slam tournaments, besides two ITF international team competitions (Davis Cup and Fed Cup). ITF president David Haggerty said, "Congratulations to our 2018 ITF world champions who have demonstrated immense skill, talent and dedication on their way to achieving great success."