Tennis

What Tsitsipas and Nadal must do in Turin to deny Alcaraz year-end No. 1 | ATP Circuit

Stefanos Tsitsipas has more than a title on the line at next week’s Nitto ATP Finals. The Greek star controls his fate in the battle for No. 1 in the year-end Pepperstone ATP Rankings.

If the 24-year-old wins the season finale without losing a match, he will ascend to World No. 1 for the first time and end the year on top of the men’s tennis mountain. However, if Tsitsipas fails to make it 5-0 at the Pala Alpitour in Turin, it will open the door for Rafael Nadal to return to the top spot.

The Spaniard can accomplish the feat by winning the title. If Tsitsipas doesn’t leave Turin an undefeated champion, Nadal can also return to World No. 1 by advancing to the final after winning all three of his round-robin matches.

Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings

Nadal has finished the year as No. 1 five times previously, most recently in 2019. Accomplishing the feat again this year would put the Spaniard with the second most year-end No. 1 finishes in the history of the Pepperstone ATP Rankings (since 1973) with Pete Sampras (6).


If neither of those scenarios play out, Carlos Alcaraz will remain at No. 1 in the world and earn his first No. 1 spot at the end of the year. The 19-year-old, who first rose to the top spot on September 12 after winning the US Open, withdrew from the Nitto ATP Finals due to a torn internal oblique muscle in his left abdominal wall.

Players at the Nitto ATP Finals earn 200 points for each round-robin win, 400 points for a semi-final win and 500 points for winning the championship match.

If Alcaraz and Nadal finish the season finale with the same number of points, Nadal will be No. 1 in the world because he will have more total points from the Grand Slams, the ATP Masters 1000 mandatory tournaments and the Nitto ATP Finals. Seven-time year-end World No. 1 Djokovic is not in contention to claim year-end No. 1 honors in Turin.

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