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Top 3 contenders to finish the year as the ATP World No. 1

Aakash Kumar
Top 5 / Top 10
1.02K   //    02 Oct 2018, 19:45 IST

ATP Heritage Celebration - Inside
From left-right: Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, and Roger Federer

With the arrival of October, we are into the last two months of tennis action before the 2018 season of tennis officially wraps up with the year-end ATP World Tour Finals. After 9 months of exhilarating and exciting tennis, it is somewhat clear that only 3 men have a chance to end the year as the World No.1.

The Big 3, as they are popularly known, are once again in the prime spot for a finish to the year as the World No.1. Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Rafael Nadal have all played some brilliant tennis this year, whose proof is clearly evident from the fact that they have shared all the 4 Grand Slams of the year. Federer started the Slam season by winning the Australian Open in January, then the French Open was won by Nadal, and then Djokovic won both the Wimbledon Championships and the US Open.

Nadal currently sits comfortably at the World No.1 position, followed by Roger Federer and then Novak Djokovic. On this note, let's check out each player's chances of finishing the year as the World No.1.

3. Roger Federer

Roger Federer v John Isner

Roger Federer's start to the 2018 season couldn't have been better. He won the Hopman Cup (no points are awarded for it) with Belinda Bencic, then the Australian Open, and then won in Rotterdam as well, en route to which he secured the World No.1 ranking. It made him the oldest man to do so (a record which he broke again in June).

But, after winning Rotterdam, his performances went downhill. He somehow scraped his way into the final in Indian Wells, where he lost to Juan Martin Del Potro after having match point in the decider set. Then he lost to Thanasi Kokkinakis in his opening round match at the Miami Masters, where he again had match points.

After this, he skipped the entire clay court season in order to give his ageing 36-year-old body a rest so that he could better prepare for his favourite grass court season.

He came back at Stuttgart, where he won the tournament and replaced Nadal as the No.1. At Halle, he somehow managed to reach the final, where he was edged in three sets by Borna Coric. Then came Wimbledon, where he lost in a thrilling 5-set quarter-final match against the tall South African, Kevin Anderson. This was followed by losses in the final at Cincinnati (lost to Djokovic, looked old for the first time ever) and then in the 4th round at the US Open.

He now has 3 tournaments before the season ends, i.e. Shanghai (1000 points), Basel (500 points) and the ATP Finals (1500, if won without losing any match). So he can win a maximum of 3000 points. Considering the fact that he is 2680 points behind the current leader, Nadal, in the race to London rankings, it is almost next to impossible for him to finish the year as the No.1.

Prediction: Ends the year as the World No. 3

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