The 13 players who have reached a career-high No 2 before Jannik Sinner and how long they stayed there

Shahida Jacobs
Michael Chang French Open champion

Jannik Sinner has become the 14th player to reach a career-high of No 2 in the ATP Rankings, but how many weeks did the other 13 players spend at No 2 without reaching No 1?

Sinner started his first week at No 2 on Monday with his rise coming on the back of winning the Miami Open.

Given his form in recent months, many believe it is only a matter of time before Sinner reaches No 1 in the rankings.

The official rankings were only introduced in 1973 so several legends of the game missed out.

List of players who have reached a career-high No 2 before Jannik Sinner:

13. Alex Corretja – 2 weeks

Eurosport pundit Alex Corretja enjoyed his best period in tennis from 1998 until 2001 as he finished runner-up at Roland Garros in 1998 and 2001 and won the Tennis Masters Cup in late 1998.

That Masters Cup title set him up for a rise to a career-high No 2 in the rankings in February 1999. He stayed there for a couple of weeks, but by the end of that year he had slipped out of the top 20.

Although he returned to the top 10 a couple of years later, he never reached the lofty heights of No 2 again.

READ MORE: Jannik Sinner joins four tennis greats in achieving prestigious early-season feat

=11. Casper Ruud – 3 weeks

Norwegian Casper Ruud came within a couple of sets of becoming the world No 1 as victory in the 2022 US Open final against Carlos Alcaraz would have seen him rise to the top of the rankings.

However, Alcaraz won the final and Ruud had to settle for the No 2 ranking. He stayed there for three consecutive weeks before slipping down the list.

Of course, there is still a chance that he could add to his three weeks or even become world No 1.

=11. Manuel Orantes – 3 weeks

Manuel Orantes’s best-ever season in tennis was in 1975 as he won the US Open – defeating Jimmy Connors in the final – and also won seven other tournaments.

But he only reached a high of No 3 in the rankings that year with 1973 the year when he made it to the No 2.

He reached No 2 on August 23, 1973 and that was his one and only stint there.

10. Arthur Ashe – 4 weeks

Arthur Ashe is one of the greatest players the game has seen, but he never made it to No 1 in the rankings.

The American won the US Open in 1968, the Australian Open in 1970 and Wimbledon in 1975, but he had to wait until May 10, 1976 to reach No 2 in the rankings as the likes Ilie Nastase, John Newcombe and Jimmy Connors hogged the No 1 spot.

He stayed there for three weeks, dropped to No 3 and then returned to No 2 for another week.

=8. Tommy Haas – 6 weeks

Tommy Haas is the only player on the list without a Grand Slam or a Grand Slam runners-up trophy. The German’s best appearances at the majors are three semi-finals at the Australian Open and one last-four appearance at Wimbledon.

Haas first reached No 2 on May 13, 2002 and was there for only one week before dropping one place. He returned for a second stint in September and stayed there for five weeks.

=8. Magnus Norman – 6 weeks

The 2000 tennis season was without a doubt Magnus Norman’s best as he won five titles and also finished runner-up to Gustavo Kuerten at Roland Garros.

The Italian Open title and his run at the French Open were key to his rise to No 2 as he notched up that feat on June 12, the day after the Paris final.

He stayed there for six consecutive weeks and failed to get another stint at No 2 or reach No 1.

7. Alexander Zverev – 11 weeks

Alexander Zverev, who finished runner-up to Dominic Thiem at the 2020 US Open final, is one of only three active players on the list alongside Sinner and Ruud and they could still make it to No 1 before they retire.

After winning his second ATP Finals title at the backend of 2021, the German started the 2022 season with runners-up trophies at the Open Sud de France and Madrid Open before reaching the semi-final of the French Open.

His run at Roland Garros propelled him to No 2, but it was a bittersweet moment for Zverev as he picked up a horrific ankle injury during his match against Rafael Nadal in Paris. That injury ruled him out for the rest of the year.

Zverev was ranked No 2 from June 13 until August 29 and then slipped down the rankings.

6. Petr Korda – 14 weeks

Petr Korda won the 1998 Australian Open final against Marcelo Rios on February 1 and a day later he became the new world No 2.

He stayed at No 2 for eight weeks and then dropped to No 3 before another spell later in the year.

By the end of the 1999 season, Korda dropped out of the top 150 and the slide continued the following year.

5. Goran Ivanisevic – 18 weeks

2001 Wimbledon winner Goran Ivanisevic, the only man to win the title as a wildcard, achieved his career-high of No 2 on July 4, 1994 on the back of reaching the Wimbledon final for a second time as he finished runner-up to Pete Sampras at SW19.

The Croatian spent 10 weeks there and then had another five-week spell at No 2 later in the year. He returned to No 2 again in January 1997 and stayed there for three weeks.

4. Ken Rosewall – 32 weeks

Ken Rosewall was never officially ranked at No 1, but L’Équipe had him top of the list in 1961.

The official ATP website states that he was only ranked No 2 with that feat achieved on April 30, 1975. He stayed there until July and spent another couple of weeks at No 2 in August-September.

The Australian won eight Grand Slams with four coming in the Open Era and there is no doubt he would have reached No 1 had the rankings been introduced before 1973.

3. Michael Stich – 34 weeks

Kicking off the top three is Michael Stich with the German reaching the pinnacle in terms of the ATP Rankings on November 22, 1993.

His move to No 2 came on the back of winning the ATP Tour World Championships, going undefeated during the round-robin phase before beating Pete Sampras in the final.

The 1991 Wimbledon winner remained at No 2 until February the following year, but after spending a week at No 4 he returned to No 2 again on February 28, this time he remained there until July before another stint later in the year.

2. Michael Chang – 49 weeks

Michael Chang remains the record holder as the youngest man to win a Grand Slam as he was 17 years and 109 days when he won the 1989 French Open.

But that feat only propelled him to No 6 in the ATP Rankings. He had to wait nearly a decade to finally crack the No 2 spot as it came on September 9, 1996 after he finished runner-up to Sampras in the US Open final.

He stayed there until January 20 the following year before returning for another spell later in the year.

1. Guillermo Vilas – 60 weeks

Four-time Grand Slam winner Guillermo Vilas competed in the same eras as Ilie Nastase, John Newcombe, Il Bjorn Borg, Jimmy Connors, John McEnroe and Mats Wilander and they were the ones to top the rankings.

Instead, the Argentine had to settle for No 2 with the feat coming on April 30, 1975. He had three different stints at No 2 in 1975 as he also finished the year there. He also had spells at No 2 in 1976, 1977, 1978 and 1982.