Tennis, like most athletic sports, has a relatively low retirement age, with the majority of the pro players retiring before age 40. Most of the elites that have graced the tennis court for the better part of the century are in their sunset years.
This has prompted the tennis world to cast its eyes on the next crop of talented youngsters with potential to make it to the top in the coming decade. Following the cue, we’ve drawn a list of the top 5 most promising talents that we hope to see compete at the highest level in the coming years. These are:
Making his pro debut in 2020 aged 18, Carlos Alcaraz Garfia is a special talent and one of the most promising prospects in tennis.
The NextGen star’s impressive performances have earned him comparisons to his idol and fellow countryman Rafael Nadal, particularly due to their superior performances on clay. He, however, finds his style of play more like Roger Federer’s.
The young Spaniard joined the Equeliete Tennis Academy when he was 15 and is under the tutelage of former world number 1 Juan Carlos Ferrera.
He has steeply climbed the global tennis Singles rankings, from 492 in the beginning of 2020 to 72 as at July 2021, with the aim to make it into the top 50. Carlos Alcaraz has received a total of three wildcards, Rio, Madrid, and Wimbledon, a testament to the organizers’ belief in the youngster’s potential.
- Three 20–4 Challenger Titles: Trieste, Barcelona, Alicante
- ATP Tour Semi-finalist, 2021 Marbella Open
- Career High Ranking: 72 (July 2021)
Emil Ruusuvuori turned pro at 18 in 2018 off the back of a strong end to his junior career, where he obtained a world number 4 peak rank, won the ITF Junior Masters, and reached the quarters and semis of the Australian and US Open in the Boys’ Singles.
He joined the Helsinki Academy aged 13, co-owned by his idol Jarkko Nieminen and Federico Ricci, his current coach. The current Finland No. 1 has also enjoyed a good opening years in the Seniors, rising over 500 positions to obtain a peak rank of 74 (April 2021).
He gained spotlight when he overcame then tenth seed Gael Monfils in the first round of the Australian Open. Ruusuvuori is a hardcourt specialist; all 4 of his Challenger Titles have come from the hard surface. However, unlike Carlos, his performances on hard and clay surfaces have a significant variance.
- ITF Junior Masters Champion
- Four Challenger Titles
- Six Challenger Finals
- Career High Ranking: 74 (April 2021)
Lorenzo Musetti is an Italian youngster brimming with potential. His performances on the tennis court have earned him nicknames such as ‘The Italian Wizard’ and ‘Italian Magician’. This, thanks to his aesthetic playing style and a powerful single backhand, which is in a way similar to that of his idol, Roger Federer.
Musetti was born in March 3, 2002, in Carrara. He is coached by Simone Tartarini, who has been working with him for over twelve years. As a junior, Lorenzo won the Boys’ Singles title at the 2019 Australian Open, subsequently becoming world No. 1.
He made his ATP debut as a wildcard in Rome in good fashion, overcoming Stan Wawrinka and Kei Nishikori, before bowing out in the third round.
In addition to Rome, he has earned wildcards to the Sardinia Open where he made it to the semifinals, as well as the Monte Carlo Open. Also, Lorenzo Musetti has made three Challenger event finals, winning in Forli before losing in Antaly and Biela.
In June 2021 he achieved an impressive career high ranking of 58. Despite his young age, the star is observed as having a calm demeanour and the mental fortitude to see out prolonged matchups. Musetti’s superior performances in 2021 have come on the hardcourt, where he has a 72% win rate, but he also has a decent record on clay.
- 2019 Australian Open Junior Title
- Forli Challenger Title
- Three Challenger Finals
- Career High Ranking: 58 (June 2021)
Jurij was born on 16th May 1999 in Nurenberg, Germany and has an Austrian nationality. The promising left-hander turned pro in 2017, winning the Almaty Challenger Title a year later.
Although he is yet to break into the Top 100, all indications are that he is well on his way. This follows a magnificent turnaround in 2020 that began with a change in approach, from change of coach to consultations with experts.
After a torrid 2019 campaign, Jurij’s adjustments paid off. Jurij hired Wolfgang Giem as his coach and ex-tennis player Javier Frana as his touring coach. What followed were back-to-back Challenger finals in February 2020 where he won two out of three, losing in Nur-Sultan.
The 22-year old has climbed up the rankings in the last two years to obtain a career-high ranking of 134 in June. Furthermore, Jurij’s preferred surface is the hardcourt, where he has played in three out of the four Challenger Title finals he’s participated in.
- Three Challenger Titles
- Four Challenger Finals: Almaty, Dallas, Cuernavaca, Nur-Sultan
- Career High Ranking: 134
Sebastian Korda was born in 5th July 2000, in Florida. The exciting American youngster is son to Petr Korda of the Czech Republic, a former world No. 2 and winner of the 1998 Australian Open.
In fact, Petr has been coaching Sebastian since he started playing tennis aged 10. Like many up-and-coming tennis stars, Sebastian idolizes Rafael Nadal, and like the Spanish icon, he too loves playing on clay.
At 17, Sebastian won the Junior Title at the Australian Open in 2018 before making his Pro debut later in the same year. He has has participated in four Challenger finals, winning the Eckental and Quimper editions.
In addition, the 21-year old achieved a career-high ranking of 46 in July 2021 after a string of solid performances on the ATP Tour. These include making it to the Delray Beach Open final and Miami Masters quarterfinal, before clinching the Emilia-Romagna Open Title. He also reached the quarterfinal of the Halle Open and the fourth round of the Wimbledon Championships.
- 2018 Australian Open Junior Title
- Two Challenger Titles
- Four Challenger Finals: Nur-Sultan, Champaign, Eckental, Quimper
- Two ATP Tour finals
- 2021 Emilia-Romagna Open Title
These five up & coming stars have sprung to the limelight in recent years and stand out in the rich field of young, exciting prospects. If you are keen to follow developments surrounding their careers, be sure to check out NZcasinoo.com to know what bookies and punters alike speculate about their progress at the world stage.