Marisela C. Martinez
History was made during 2018 with Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, leading the ATP World Tour rankings, breaking records, and setting new milestones throughout the year. While, some big names were missing during this season, others made legendary comebacks, alongside a young generation of talented tennis stars led by Alexander Zverev.
1. Novak Djokovic (Serbia) – Wimbledon & US Open Champion
Despite having a slow star in 2018, Djokovic was able to recover from surgery in February and comeback stronger, winning two Grand Slams and completing the Golden Masters.
2. Rafael Nadal (Spain) – Roland Garros Champion
The King of Clay won his 11th Roland Garros, and despite injuries and setbacks, he was able to finish the year with a 45-4 W/L record and winning 5 titles along the way.
3. Roger Federer (Switzerland) – Australian Open Champion
The Swiss maestro had an impressive 2018 season, getting back to World No. 1 at the age of 36, winning his 20th Grand Slam, and claiming his 99th title.
4. Alexander Zverev (Germany) – Nitto ATP Finals Champion
Zverev is leading the way for the younger generations, as the youngest player (age 21) inside the Top 10, while claiming the biggest title of his career in London.
5. Juan Martin del Potro (Argentina) – Indian Wells Champion and US Open finalist
Delpo has been battling wrist injuries for years, and had an amazing comeback in 2018, breaking into the Top 3 for the first time in his career, while claiming two titles this year.
6. Kevin Anderson (South Africa) – Vienna Champion and Wimbledon finalist
Anderson was the first ever South African tennis player to reach Top 5, after reaching the Wimbledon final, and wining the biggest title of his career in Vienna.
7. Marin Cilic (Croatia) – Davis Cup Champion and Australian Open finalist
Cilic had a great start in 2018, reaching a career-high No. 3 ranking, after losing to Federer at the Australian Open final in five epic sets. Cilic led Croatia to win their 2nd Davis Cup title.
8. Dominic Thiem (Austria) – Won 3 titles in 2018 and Roland Garros finalist
Second youngest player inside the Top 10 (age 25). Thiem had a brilliant clay court season reaching the Roland Garros final and ending Nadal’s 50 set-clay court win streak.
9. Kei Nishikori (Japan) – Monte Carlo finalist and US Open semi-finalist
The top Asian tennis player in the ATP Tour ranking history made history in New York alongside WTA player Naomi Osaka, after the pair became the first Japanese man and woman to reach the semis.
10. John Isner (USA) – Miami Open Champion
Isner reached a career-high No. 8 ranking after defeating Cilic, Del Potro, and Zverve, to clinch the biggest title of his career in Miami. Isner sealed the year qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals in London.
We cannot wait for the 2019 season to begin, to find out how history will unfold, and how many milestones will be broken. From Roger’s 100th title quest, to Novak’s and Rafa’s battle for greatness, alongside a young talented generation of tennis starts moving up the ATP World Tour rankings.
If you love women’s tennis and enjoyed this article on the ATP rankings of 2018, check out my recent article on the 2018 Top 10 WTA world rankings.