2017 men’s ATP top 5- where are they now?

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 09: Jack Sock of USA, Marin Cilic of Croatia, Alexander Zverev of Germany and Roger Federer of Switzerland speak with Andrew Castle during the The Official Launch ATP Finals at Tower of London on November 9, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 09: Jack Sock of USA, Marin Cilic of Croatia, Alexander Zverev of Germany and Roger Federer of Switzerland speak with Andrew Castle during the The Official Launch ATP Finals at Tower of London on November 9, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images) /

The 2017 ATP men’s season was truly a year of new beginnings. At the beginning of the year, it seemed like 2017 was just a continuation of 2016. Novak Djokovic started the season in predictable fashion- winning the opening tournament of the season in straight sets against then world number 1 Andy Murray. This was in Doha in the first week of January 2017. That very same week- in what was a glimpse of the future that was to come, Grigor Dimitrov beat Kei Nishikori to win the Brisbane International. These 2 players would be just the foundational players which would shape a whirlwind and unprecedented tour for the rest of the next few years.

However, arguably the biggest shock to the system would come roughly a fortnight later. Having won no singles warm-up tournaments leading up to the Australian Open, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer were the final 2 players left in the draw. No Novak Djokovic. No Andy Murray. It was 3 years since somebody besides Andy Murray or Novak Djokovic faced off in an Australian Open final. However, fast forward 2 weeks after this epic, we truly saw the beginning of a new future. On the 6th of February 2017, then world number 22 Alexander Zverev went toe-to-toe with his higher ranked opponent, world number 18 (and former top 10 player) Richard Gasquet. It was truly a clash of generations, and a passing-of-the-torch moment which would hallmark a new era of the men’s top 10, beginning with Alexander Zverev. So without further ado, here is a look at the world’s top 10 rankings on the 6th of October 2017, exactly 6 years ago:

1.Rafael Nadal

This one needs no explanation. Rafael Nadal was an incredible player in 2017, but his achievements after 2017 were even more astonishing. Nadal after  2017:

won Roland Garros in 2018

made the Australian Open final in 2019

won the US Open in 2019

won the French Open in 2020: This edition was one of the most unusual slams ever played. The outbreak of the first global pandemic in 100 years meant the French Open was postponed, with the final being played in October during a twilight fixture with cooler conditions. Fans were also slightly more limited with only 1000 paying fans allowed to attend, compared to the usual 5000. Players were also expected to be masked when entering the arena- as well as fans and coaches in attendance.

won the Australian Open 2022

won the French Open 2022

Nadal also finished world number 2 in 2018. He then finished year-end world number 1 two years on from 2017 in 2019. Nadal also reclaimed the number 1 spot as recently as early 2020- and had the chance to finish year-end world number 1 in 2022. However, injuries had cruelled his campaign., and at last year’s US Open, Nadal’s chances of returning to world number 1 hinged on two players not making the final of the US Open. Unfortunately, in quite the worst case scenario, both of these players progressed to a grand slam final.

Unfortunately Nadal is currently not in the world’s top 10

2. Roger Federer

Roger Federer was also an incredible player post-2017. In fact, in 2018, he reclaimed the world number 1 ranking for the first time since 2012, with a win over Robin Haase at the ATP 500 event in Rotterdam. He followed up his heroics of 2017 with a win at the 2018 Australian Open. Two years on from 2017, he also fell short to Nadal in the 2019 French Open semi-final, followed by losing in the final of Wimbledon that same season.

Unfortunately, Federer is now retired at the moment and is not in the world’s top 10

3. Alexander Zverev

Alexander Zverev held the torch alongside Nadal in the men’s top 10 for the 5 years following 2017. In 2018, Zverev won the ATP finals and finished the year ranked number 4 in the world. In 2019, Zverev continued his consistency and finished 2019 inside the world’s top 10 for the third time in a row (17, 18,19). In 2020, Zverev began to make strides at slams and made the semi-final of the Australian Open, followed by making the final of the US Open. Zverev finished inside the top 10 for the fourth straight year, finishing 7th again. In 2021, Zverev won Olympic gold at the Tokyo Olympics- then won the ATP finals a few months. Zverev finished 2021 ranked 3rd in the world, his fifth consecutive top 10 finish. In 2022. Zverev sustained an ankle injury in a serious fall during his epic semi-final match against Rafael Nadal at the 2022 French Open. Later that year in early November, Zverev left the top 10 rankings for the first time in just over 250 weeks, ending a consecutive streak of 5 years and 3 months in the men’s top 10 world rankings of tennis. However, in early September of this year, Zverev made his long-awaited return to the top of the men’s game, re-entering the world’s top 10.

Zverev is currently in the world’s top 10

4. Dominic Thiem

Dominic Thiem followed up his feats of 2017 with 2 consecutive appearances in the finals of the French Open in 2018 and 2019. Thiem, alongside Nadal and Zverev served as a bedrock of stability in the men’s tennis rankings, finishing inside the top 10 together in 2018, 2019 and 2020. In 2020, Thiem lost a 5 set thriller at the Australian Open to Novak Djokovic, but later claimed the biggest scalp of his career, winning the 2020 US Open. Thiem then finished his 2020 season by almost winning the ATP Finals and was up 6-4 6-6. However, injuries  have been a huge blow for Thiem for the last 3 years. Thiem fell out of the world’s top 10 in 2021, and has not managed his way back inside the top 10 since.

Unfortunately Thiem is currently not in the world’s top 10

5. Marin Cilic

Marin Cilic backed up his feats of 2017 with an equally good season the following year in 2018. Cilic made the final of the Australian Open in the next year, but lost in 5 sets to Roger Federer. In 2018, Cilic again qualified for the ATP finals and finished 2018 as the world number 7. Unfortunately, Cilic’s form over the past 4 years has been shaky, and he has not managed to re-enter the top 10 rankings since 2018. In 2022, Cilic had a mini resurgence and faced off for a spot in the final of the 2022 French Open. Cilic won the first set 6-4, but unfortunately lost the match in 4 sets. A few months later, Cilic pushed the eventual champion to 5 sets in the fourth round of the 2022 US Open. As a result, he re-entered the top 15 rankings- and reached a new ranking of world number 14. The last time that Cilic was ranked 14 or higher was way back in May 2019. In the first week of 2023, the top seeded Cilic sustained a knee injury before his quarter-final match against Tallon Griekspoor at the Pune Open. Cilic returned to action in late July of this year, and is currently making a return post-injury.

Unfortunately Cilic is currently not in the world’s top 10


6. Grigor Dimitrov

Grigor Dimitrov was a mainstay in the top 10 for almost all of the year following his incredible 2017 season. Having won the ATP finals the previous season, Dimitrov spent 10 consecutive months of 2018 inside the world’s top 10- but fell out of the top 10 rankings at the end of October 2018. Unfortunately, this was the last time that Dimitrov featured inside the world’s top 10 men’s tennis rankings.  Despite this, Dimitrov has had a couple of incredible results, proving that he still has it. In 2019, Grigor Dimitrov shocked the world and toppled world number 3 Federer to advance to semi-finals of the US Open. Dimitrov then played his semi-final for a shot at playing Nadal for the 2019 US Open title. Dimitrov unfortunately lost in straight sets. Post-pandemic, Dimitrov has also had a couple of astonishing runs at Masters 1000s. In 2021, he made the Indian Wells semi-final, as well as the 2022 Monte Masters semi-final the following year.

Unfortunately Dimitrov is currently not in the world’s top 10