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2021 ATP Predictions: Year-End Top 10 Rankings

ATP Year-End Top Eight

Ahead of the 2021 season (read my predictions for who will win all four Grand Slams, the ATP Finals and Olympic medals here), I will be offering my predictions for the ATP year-end top 10, with a full summary of how I expect the rankings to look at the end of the year.

2021 ATP Predictions: Year-End Top 10 Rankings

10. Roger Federer (Switzerland)

 2020 Rank  #5  Career High Rank  #1
 2020 Win Rate  83%  Career Win Rate  82%

Roger Federer is many people’s pick as the greatest tennis player of all time, but I believe father time will finally catch up with him in 2021. I still believe he is mentally broken from his loss at the 2019 Wimbledon final, where he had two championship points on his serve. In addition, having not played since the 2020 Australian Open as he continues to recover from surgery, he may not hit the ground running when he returns. Sadly I think the Swiss will struggle to remain in the Top 10.

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9. Diego Schwartzman (Argentina)

 2020 Rank  #9  Career High Rank  #8
 2020 Win Rate  63%  Career Win Rate  54%

Diego Schwartzman has become one of the most reliable players in the ATP, reaching a Grand Slam quarterfinal or better for the past four seasons. Having reached his first Masters final and Grand Slam semifinal in 2020, his consistency will help the Argentine retain his Top 10 ranking in 2021.

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8. Andrey Rublev (Russia)

 2020 Rank  #8  Career High Rank  #8
 2020 Win Rate  80%  Career Win Rate  60%

With a tour-leading five titles won in what was a disrupted 2020 season, Rublev will surely remain a fixture in the Top 10 in 2021. However, his performances against top players in big matches have me doubting whether he can go any higher in the rankings. Therefore, I don’t predict a ranking rise next year.

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7. Stefanos Tsitsipas (Greece)

 2020 Rank  #6  Career High Rank  #5
 2020 Win Rate  67%  Career Win Rate  64%

Having finished in the Top 10 for the past two seasons as well as reaching a Grand Slam semi-final in each of them, it makes sense to expect Tsitipas to be in the Top 10 at the end of 2021. I would be surprised if we don’t see him at the Nitto ATP Finals once again next year.

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6. Pablo Carreno Busta (Spain)

 2020 Rank  #16  Career High Rank  #10
 2020 Win Rate  63%  Career Win Rate  54%

The Spaniard was one of the most underrated players following the resumption of the tour, reaching the semifinals at the US Open and the quarterfinals at the French Open. His work ethic coupled with him still being under the radar is what I believe will propel him to a career-high ranking in 2021.

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5. Alexander Zverev (Germany)

 2020 Rank  #7  Career High Rank  #3
 2020 Win Rate  72%  Career Win Rate  67%

Zverev may have more off-days and serving struggles than almost any Top 10 player in ATP history but in 2020 he made sure that he brought his A-game to the Grand Slams reaching the second week of all three that were played. Therefore, whilst his dips in form will stop him contending for No.1, he will likely have enough big results to scrape a Top 5 finish.

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4. Daniil Medvedev (Russia)

 2020 Rank  #4  Career High Rank  #4
 2020 Win Rate  74%  Career Win Rate  65%

Medvedev was knocking on the doors of winning a very big hard court title and he finally achieved this in 2020 by winning the ATP Finals whilst beating the Top 3 players en route and not losing a single match. Therefore, I have little doubt that the Russian will have another high-ranking finish. However, I still have my concerns for him across best of five set matches and his consistency outside hard courts, which is what rules him out of the race for No.1.

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3. Rafael Nadal (Spain)

 2020 Rank  #2  Career High Rank  #1
 2020 Win Rate  79%  Career Win Rate  83%

With his dominance on clay courts for virtually his entire career, Nadal will almost certainly pick up most the points available on that surface enabling him to attain a high ranking. However, in 2020 we saw him be a less formidable opponent on hard courts with many NextGen players fancying their chances against him and beating him. As he reaches the latter stages of his career, I predict an increasing reliance on clay in 2021, which will leave him struggling to finish No.1.

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2. Dominic Thiem (Austria)

 2020 Rank  #3  Career High Rank  #3
 2020 Win Rate  74%  Career Win Rate  66%

One of the feel good stories in men’s tennis in 2020 was seeing Thiem finally winning a Grand Slam title at the US Open. After also reaching the final of the Australian Open and ATP Finals, the Austrian has proven that he is no longer only a contender on clay. Whilst he can come close to the No.1 ranking in 2021, he has yet to emerge as a threat on grass, which may be the factor that I think will restrict him to No.2

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1. Novak Djokovic (Serbia)

 2020 Rank  #1  Career High Rank  #1
 2020 Win Rate  89%  Career Win Rate  83%

Djokovic has the most reliable player in men’s tennis for the last decade and he demonstrated this in 2020 by having the highest win percentage on tour. What gives him the edge against his nearest rivals is that one would back him to reach the final at any tournament. Therefore, there is plenty of ranking point opportunities for the Serbian, which is why I predict him as my year-end No.1 in 2021.

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Rank. Player Name (Country) (Change)

  1. Novak Djokovic (SRB) (=)
  2. Dominic Thiem (AUT) (+1)
  3. Rafael Nadal (ESP) (-1)
  4. Daniil Medvedev (RUS) (=)
  5. Alexander Zverev (GER) (+2)
  6. Pablo Carreno Busta (ESP) (+10)
  7. Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) (-1)
  8. Andrey Rublev (RUS) (=)
  9. Diego Schwartzman (ARG) (=)
  10. Roger Federer (SUI) (-5)

What do you think the top of men’s tennis will look like at the end of 2021? Let me know in the comments!

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