Nadal Honoured With ATP World Tour No. 1 Trophy
Rafael Nadal was honoured on court Sunday afternoon at the Nitto ATP Finals, receiving his ATP World Tour No. 1 trophy from ATP Executive Chairman & President Chris Kermode for finishing as the year-end No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings.
“It’s been a fantastic season, a very emotional one after all the things I’ve been going through the last couple of years,” said Nadal during the on-court ceremony. “It’s not something I could’ve thought of one year ago, so it means a lot to me.
“None of this could’ve been possible without my family, my team... I can just say many thanks to all of them for the support. There have been some tough moments but everybody kept believing that things like this are possible again so without the work of all them, I wouldn’t be back where I am today.”
Nadal also shared his appreciation for the tournaments, fans and sponsors. “Without you, nothing would be the same, so thanks everybody for supporting our sport,” he said.
Nadal has enjoyed a stellar season, capturing six titles – including two Grand Slams and two ATP World Tour Masters 1000s — from 10 tour-level finals. This past spring, he became the first player in the Open Era to win 10 titles at the same tournament. Even more impressively, he accomplished 'La Decima' not just once, but three times with his triumphs in Barcelona, Monte-Carlo and Roland Garros.
At 31, Nadal is the oldest player to finish year-end No. 1 (since 1973). Having previously finished at the top in 2008, 2010 and 2013, Nadal becomes the first player to hold, lose and regain the year-end No. 1 on three occasions. He is also the seventh player to finish the year at the pinnacle of men’s professional tennis on four or more occasions
He is also the first player to finish No. 1 four times in non-consecutive years, the first aged over-30 and the first to finish in the top spot four years since he last achieved the feat (2013). The nine-year gap between his first year-end No. 1 season (2008) and his last (2017) is also a record.
Nadal is looking to cap off his remarkable comeback season with his first season finale crown. He opens his campaign Monday evening against Belgian David Goffin.