Novak Djokovic knocked off world No 1 spot in tennis rankings he endorses

Kevin Palmer
Novak Djokovic press conference Australian Open
Novak Djokovic looks on during a press conference

The UTR rankings offer up an alternative view of the state of play in tennis and the updated list suggests Novak Djokovic has been ousted as the king of the men’s game.

Djokovic headed into 2024 as the undisputed king of men’s tennis after ending last year with another dominant display at the ATP Finals in Turin.

His aura and presence on court appeared to be too much for most of his rivals to overcome and there was an expectation that the Serbian legend would confirm he is in a class of his own at the Australian Open.

Yet the 10-time champion in Melbourne was not at his best for most of the tournament and was then beaten by Italy’s Jannik Sinner in the semi-finals.

The manner of Djokovic’s defeat raised plenty of questions over Djokovic’s waning powers, yet there have been suggestions that he was suffering from a virus that may have affected his stamina over the two-week event.

Now the latest UTR rankings have been released and they confirm Djokovic’s fall from grace, with Sinner replacing the 24-time Grand Slam champion at the top of the list.

Sinner’s three wins against Djokovic in his last four meetings will have contributed to his leap up the UTR rankings as they reward wins against higher-ranked opponents to be evidence of a change of momentum in that rivalry.

So the next time Djokovic plays Sinner, he will have a chance to gain additional UTR ranking points as he will be taking on a player ranked higher than him in the current standings.

READ MORE: Novak Djokovic knocked off world No 1 spot in updated tennis rankings

The UTR rankings are endorsed by Djokovic and he made these comments that suggest he believes they are more accurate to assess current form than the ATP list.

“The UTR Rating is the best way to measure yourself against all other players regardless of their age or skill level,” stated Djokovic.

There are some additional talking points in the new UTR ratings, with Australian Open runner-up Daniil Medvedev in third place in the rankings, Carlos Alcaraz down in fourth and Rafael Nadal still on this list at No 6.

Alexander Zverev, Grigor Dmitrov, Taylor Fritz and Hubert Hurkacz are also in the top ten, with Australia’s Nick Kyrgios at No 13 and Great Britain’s Jack Draper at No 16.

The method for calculating the UTR ratings differs greatly from the rolling ATP list, which ranks players based on the points they collect over 52 weeks.

Victories against higher-ranked played are worth more in the UTR list than the official ATP or WTA ranking, meaning they offer up a more accurate reflection of the current form at the top of the game.

The UTR rankings are based on the current form from the last few weeks and months rather than reflecting results that occurred up to a year ago, with the system created to promote fair and competitive play across the tennis world.

All players, regardless of age, gender, geography, or skill level, are rated on the same scale between 1.00 and 16.50 based on actual match results.

The brainchild of tennis professionals who wanted to prevent lopsided matches, UTR Sports had humble beginnings in the mid-2000s to launch a tennis rating.

UTR Sports partners and investors include Novak Djokovic, Team8, Tennis Channel, Amazon Prime Video, Tennis Australia, and many more.

As the concept expanded, UTR Sports realized that by building a system that would stop unbalanced matches, they were actually developing something more powerful: a truly global rating system, capable of accurately rating players based upon their actual match results—regardless of if they were recreational players or professionals.

The UTR Rating is the gold-standard rating for college tennis and is used for recruiting by almost all college coaches in the U.S.