By Chris Oddo/ Wednesday, October 9, 2013
Rafael Nadal reached the ATP's No. 1 ranking for a third time this week. Find out what other rankings milestone Nadal is trying to achieve in Statisfaction.
Photo Source: AP
To honor the occasion of Rafael Nadal's ascension to the world No. 1 ranking for a third time, we bring you a smattering of facts about the ATP's top slot:
Only three players have ever recovered to finish a season as the ATP's year-end No. 1 after not holding the year-end No. 1 slot the previous year. They are Ivan Lendl, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. This season, Nadal is bidding to become the only man to achieve the feat three times.
Johnny Mac's Roller Coaster Ride
John McEnroe held the No. 1 ranking a record 14 times, and the American is one of only two players to have held it more than 10 times. Pete Sampras was No. 1 11 times.
The Longest Stint
In his first stint as world No. 1, Roger Federer held the ATP's top spot for a remarkable 237 weeks. Nobody else has ever held it for 200 weeks consecutively. If your kids ever ask you what was so good about Federer, just feed 'em that stat and tell them to go to bed.
One Hit Wonders
Eight former No. 1 players never regained the top ranking after they initially lost it. They are: Ilie Nastase, John Newcombe, Evgeny Kafelnikov, Juan Carlos Ferrero, Andy Roddick, Mats Wilander, Patrick Rafter and Carlos Moya. Of those players, Nastase had the longest stint at No. 1, lasting 40 weeks.
The Century Club
Only four players have held the No. 1 ranking for more than 100 weeks consecutively. They are: Roger Federer (237), Jimmy Connors (160), Ivan Lendl (157) and Pete Sampras (102).
Trio of Dominance
The venerable trio of Jimmy Connors-John McEnroe-Ivan Lendl spelled doom for all players who aspired to the No. 1 ranking in the '80s. One of these three bad boys held the ranking for a seven-plus year period that lasted from Aug. 3, 1981, to Sept. 12, 1988 (Mats Wilander eventually broke their stranglehold). It was the longest such streak until...
The Ultimate Trio of Dominance
Roger Federer-Rafael Nadal-Novak Djokovic, as a trio, have held the No. 1 ranking since Feb. 2, 2004. That's right, folks. After next year's Australian Open, the trio will have hit the 10-year mark. Federer did the heavy lifting in the first five years, but since Nadal became No. 1 in 2008, he and Djokovic have helped keep the clamps tight. Will it ever end?
Pat Rafter owns the dubious distinction of being the only former No. 1 to have held the top spot for only one week. He took over the top spot from Andre Agassi on July 26, 1999. I bet it was a pretty awesome week, though.
Lleyton Hewitt is the youngest No. 1 in ATP history. He was 20 years and eight months old when he took over in November 2001.
Aussie John Newcombe was 30 years and 11 months when he finally climbed to the top of the ATP mountain on June 3, 1974.
1999, What Chaos!
1999 was a record-setting year on two levels, as it featured the most No. 1's in history (5: Moya, Sampras, Kafelnikov, Agassi and Rafter) and the most new No. 1's in history (3: Moya, Rafter, Kafelnikov).
Read My Lips: No New No. 1's
The longest stint without seeing a newly crowned No. 1 happened in the '80s while Mac, Connors and Lendl were running roughshod over the rest of the tour. From Feb. 28, 1983, until Sept. 12, 1988, nobody new broke through.