Tribute: Mike Bryan Celebrates 500th Week At No. 1 In ATP Doubles Rankings
ATPTour.com pays tribute to one half of a doubles record-breaker
It is a remarkable individual achievement in a team game for the oldest No. 1 in the history of the ATP Doubles Rankings. At 41 years, 28 days, one-half of doubles poster boys' for the majority of the past 20 years, currently leads No. 2-ranked Jack Sock, with whom Mike won Wimbledon and the US Open titles in Bob's injury-enforced absence last year, by 1,915 points.
“It seems like yesterday that we won Roland Garros [in 2003] and reached No. 1,” Mike Bryan told ATPTour.com. “It’s a dream to hit No. 1, but to be No. 1 for so long I owe it to this guy. We’ve been pushing each other and never really taken the foot off the gas as long as we’ve been playing. We’ve always reached for more and never been satisfied when we’ve won a tournament and set our sights on the next one. There has been sacrifice, but we love what we do.”
And 15 years after first reaching the summit of the team game on 8 September 2003; and 46 weeks since returning to No. 1 for his 13th stint on 16 July 2018 - the first time since 25 October 2013 - Mike Bryan continues to compete with the same passion, energy and dedication, with a record 1,129 tour-level match wins and 123 titles.
Mark Woodforde, who partnered Todd Woodbridge to five year-end team No. 1 finishes (1992, '95-97 and 2000), told ATPTour.com, "The reality is, reaching No. 1 status doesn't come easy. Each of us who have held down that top spot in singles and/or doubles has undergone sacrifices along the way. We have suffered pain, angst, crisis moments that create doubt, but it's the ability to absorb, learn, tolerate and persevere [that wins through]. It doesn’t happen overnight and perhaps you have to understand there is an investment in the journey. Mike's achievement is truly wonderful for a special individual."
TOP 5 MOST WEEKS AT DOUBLES NO. 1
|Player||Weeks At No. 1||Stints At No. 1|
|Mike Bryan (USA)||500||13|
|Bob Bryan (USA)||439||13|
|John McEnroe (USA)||269||7|
|Todd Woodbridge (AUS)||204||9|
|Daniel Nestor (CAN)||108||10|
However, it's simply not possible to praise Mike, without mentioning Bob. Reunited on court in January 2019, for the first time since the Mutua Madrid Open seven months earlier, the twins have maintained their winning ways following Bob's hip surgery and recovery with ATP Tour titles at the Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com and their sixth at the Miami Open presented by Itau. Together, the pair has won 118 titles from 176 finals, earned 1,085 match wins and spent 438 weeks leading the team game - all records!
Nenad Zimonjic, who spent 50 weeks at No. 1 and played against the Bryans on close to 50 occasions, told ATPTour.com, "It's always been a privilege to compete and share the same court. It was them who pushed me to work harder and to make my game the best it could be. They are both hard working, very professional and always try to improve their games, as well as promote doubles with their father, Wayne. World No. 1 is the best spot you want to be, it's what you work for. Once you're there, you want to stay there. Players you compete against want to beat you, but the longer you stay there, the stronger you become. To break and share all these records and milestones is really inspiring."
Woodforde, who spent four stints at No. 1 in the ATP Doubles Rankings for 83 total weeks, told ATPTour.com, "The joy and pride that comes with being No. 1 can also be a burden as you are now a benchmark for opponents every time you step out to play. It’s an honour to set records that are a piece of history - there’s a little something inside of you that hopes it won’t be touched yet you realise that records create dreams, and provide a benchmark for players/future generations to break."