Within a week, two Spaniards will sit on the throne of world tennis, the first two places in the ATP ranking. It depends on Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz, of course. An unprecedented cohabitation for Spain, which has been missing worldwide since 2000, the epilogue of the hegemony of Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras.
Compatriots at number 1 and number 2 in the world: an American domain. Two compatriots at the top of the ATP ranking. An extraordinary fact in itself, which is even more so when looking at history. It was on August 7, 2000 when, for the last time, Andre Agassi sat at the top of world tennis ahead of his rival Pete Sampras.
It happened for the first time six years earlier, in 1994, but it is not the duels between these two legends that occupy our statistical story. Because a similar simultaneity of passports will not happen again for another 22 years.
Until next week. Let's be clear, the matrix will only be Made in the USA. In 1976, at the dawn of the circuit, Jimmy Connors, 24, is in first place ahead of Arthur Ashe, fresh from his victory at Wimbledon the previous year.
Six years later, Jimbo had to make way for his countryman Joe McEnroe. From 1981, and until 1984, Ivan Lendl would also join his partner, for a ranking that came to monopolize the first three positions. It is American tennis that rules, and it will do so for a long time, practically during the entire 90s.
Colom on Nadal and Federer
Toni Colom, former coach of Rafael Nadal, reminisced about the time when a congratulatory text from Roger Federer sent the Spaniard to cloud nine. "As many of you know, I was lucky enough to be able to experience Rafael Nadal's Futures, Challengers and first ATP stage very closely by accompanying him in certain tournaments there in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005, with which I saw the birth of perhaps the greatest and most beautiful world tennis rivalry," he said.
Colom further said how their relationship further improved the "greatness of sport and especially tennis." "In my memory I have recorded the joy that Rafael expressed when in September 2005, on his way back to the hotel after winning the ATP final in Beijing, he received an SMS from Roger congratulating him on the Championship won minutes before and that demonstrates the good f*undations that were created. this exemplary relationship that has further enriched the greatness of sport and especially tennis," he stated.