Tennis: Novak Djokovic finishes at No. 1 in the ATP rankings for a record-extending eighth time

AP , Monday 4 Dec 2023

Novak Djokovic earned the year-end No. 1 spot in the ATP rankings for the eighth time on Monday, adding to a record he already held.

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns the ball against Jannik Sinner of Italy during a Davis Cup semi-final tennis match between Italy and Serbia in Malaga, Spain, Saturday, Nov. 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)


Djokovic won three of the four Grand Slam tournaments — the Australian Open in January, French Open in June and U.S. Open in September — to raise his career total to a men's-record 24 and was the runner-up at the other, Wimbledon. He went 56-7 this season while leading the tour with seven titles, including at the ATP Finals last month.

The 36-year-old from Serbia regained the top ranking from Carlos Alcaraz, who edged him in a five-set final at the All England Club in July.

Alcaraz finished 2023 at No. 2 after the two men swapped No. 1 back-and-forth repeatedly this year.

Iga Swiatek claimed the WTA's year-end No. 1 ranking for the second consecutive year by winning the WTA Finals last month. Swiatek, who won her fourth career major championship at the French Open, overtook Aryna Sabalenka, the Australian Open champion and runner-up to Coco Gauff at the U.S. Open. Gauff finished at No. 3, followed by Elena Rybakina at No. 4 and Jessica Pegula at No. 5.

Djokovic eclipsed his own mark for the oldest player to top the ATP at the end of a season; he was 34 in 2021.

His eight year-end No. 1s put him two ahead of previous record-holder Pete Sampras, who did it six times. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal each finished at No. 1 five times, as did Jimmy Connors.

Daniil Medvedev closed 2023 at No. 3, followed by Jannik Sinner at a career-best No. 4, Andrey Rublev at No. 5, Stefanos Tsitsipas at No. 6, Alexander Zverev at No. 7, Holger Rune at No. 8, Hubert Hurkacz at No. 9 and Taylor Fritz at No. 10.

Alcaraz and Rune are both 20, marking the first time two men that young both ended a season in the top 10 since 2000, when Marat Safin, 20, was No. 2, and Lleyton Hewitt, 19, was No. 7.

There are three 19-year-olds in the top 100: No. 36 Arthur Fils, No. 71 Luca Van Assche and No. 97 Alex Michelson, an American who jumped up 504 spots after ending last year at No. 601.

The United States is the country with the most men in the top 20, four: Fritz, No. 13 Tommy Paul, No. 16 Frances Tiafoe and No. 17 Ben Shelton.

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