The 24-year-old Hyeon Chung can't catch a break and remain injury-free for at least one year. World no. 163 had to undergo another minor back surgery, struggling with it for a couple of years and not making any progress in the season behind us.
Hyeon scored 12 ATP wins as a teenager in 2015 and finished just outside the top-50, losing ground a year later due to injuries and dropping out from the top-100. In 2017, Chung played well on clay and returned into the top-50 by the summer.
Not moving forward through the list, Hyeon closed the season with the ATP Next Gen Finals title, gathering a boost and advancing into the semi-final at the Australian Open next January and cracking the top-20 in April. The Korean had to miss almost the entire clay and grass season due to a lower leg injury, playing only Munich and Madrid and making a slow return in Atlanta at the end of July, struggling to find the form and winning rhythm.
The ranking was still there, but the results were not, winning just nine matches by the end of the season that he had to conclude earlier than expected due to right foot blisters. Still ranked in the top-25 thanks to those Australian Open points, the Korean spent the offseason in Thailand and on physical strength and developing tools to play more aggressively in 2019 and avoid injuries.
Hyeon Chung is still struggling with back injury.
Exploring the solutions for his blisters issues, Hyeon also felt back pain for months, with nothing he could do to make them go away, competing in just five matches in 2019 and staying away from the court between February and August!
With only 45 points gained in the first five months, the Korean dropped out from the top-150 for the first time since February 2015. He improved his position a bit after claiming the Chengdu title in the comeback event and advanced into the US Open third round and the Tokyo quarter-final, staying outside the top-100 but making a stable starting position ahead of 2020.
Unable to play at his best, Chung lost all four Challenger matches in the season behind us and failed to qualify for Roland Garros, keeping himself in the rankings thanks to those points won in 2019. Hyeon will have to make another delay following the newest surgery, hoping to return stronger and get back where he belongs in the rest of the season.