Rafael Nadal is back inside the top-2, starting his 580th week in the exclusive group. Rafa is in his best ranking position since May 2021, looking good to wrap up the year in the top-2 after defending no points in the rest of the season.
Thus, Nadal joined Carlos Alcaraz at the top, forming the first top-2 duo from the same country since Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras in 2000! At 36, Rafa is the third-oldest top-2 player since 1973, moving closer to Ken Rosewall and Roger Federer and leaving Novak Djokovic behind.
Also, Nadal is back inside the top-2 over 17 years after cracking the group for the first time, earning another record that will take some beating in the future!
Rafael Nadal is spending his 580th week in the top-2.
Nadal claimed 11 ATP titles in 2005, including Roland Garros and four Masters 1000 crowns.
He turned 19 in June and became Roger Federer's only serious rival at the top. Rafa found himself in the top-2 at the end of July and stayed there for four years. Recovering from an injury, Rafa became the world's leading player again in 2013 and remained in the top-2 until the end of 2014.
The Spaniard did not play well in 2015 and 2016, struggling with injuries and a lack of form and barely staying in the top-10. Nadal bounced back in 2017 and returned where he belonged. Rafa won two Majors that season and finished as the year-end no.
1 player for the first time since 2013. Nadal secured four year-end top-2 honors between 2017 and 2020 to extend his run and become the player with the most weeks in the top-2 since the start of the ranking in 1973! Rafa could not repeat that in 2021, struggling with an injury and playing two encounters after Roland Garros.
As many times before, Nadal bounced back in 2022 to extend his remarkable career and write history books. Rafa won his opening 20 matches and conquered the Australian Open and Roland Garros to leave Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic behind.
Nadal is 2nd in the ATP Race behind Carlos Alcaraz, hoping to wrap up another season in the year-end top-2. Rafa is unsure when he will compete again, with his wife and him expecting the first child. Also, the Spaniard has been dealing with an abdominal injury since Wimbledon, unable to serve properly and compete at 100%.