Roger Federer

Who Will Be Top Eight at the End of 2020? [Results]

The tennis world has spoken, see the results of the Top 8 poll.

Last week I published a post allowing fans to predict the year-end top eight for the upcoming 2020 season. At the time of writing, over 300 fans have filled in their predictions, and there are some interesting picks.

I was expecting some stupid ones in there from those with undeveloped frontal lobes, but as it stands aside from one person who selected Fernando Verdasco as next years year-end world number one, most of them are reasonable 😆 .

Of course, with such a large contingent of Federer fans, there's going to be some bias and picks to avoid ‘jinxing' which skews the results slightly. Still, I've compiled the data based on the 304 unique responses that had come in when I pulled the data into a spreadsheet, and you can see the results below.

How Many Players are in the Running To Finish in the Top 8?

Atp Finals Top Eight

Respondents think that 39 different players have a chance of finishing in the Top 8 in 2020.

I don't think there are any glaring omissions from my perspective, but as you will see later, I was surprised at how few picks some players got.

The players in with a chance of finishing ranked in the top eight are as follows:

  • Alex de Minaur
  • Alexander Bublik
  • Alexander Zverev
  • Andrey Rublev
  • Andy Murray
  • Borna Ćorić
  • Cameron Norrie
  • Cristian Garín
  • Daniil Medvedev
  • David Goffin
  • Denis Shapovalov
  • Diego Schwartzman
  • Dominic Thiem
  • Fabio Fognini
  • Félix Auger-Aliassime
  • Fernando Verdasco
  • Frances Tiafoe
  • Gaël Monfils
  • Grigor Dimitrov
  • Guido Pella
  • Jannik Sinner
  • John Isner
  • Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
  • Juan Martín del Potro
  • Karen Khachanov
  • Kei Nishikori
  • Lucas Pouille
  • Matteo Berrettini
  • Milos Raonic
  • Nick Kyrgios
  • Nikoloz Basilashvili
  • Novak Djoković
  • Pablo Carreño Busta
  • Rafael Nadal
  • Reilly Opelka
  • Roberto Bautista Agut
  • Roger Federer
  • Stan Wawrinka
  • Stefanos Tsitsipas

Who is the Favourite to Finish Next Year as the Number One Ranked Player?

Year End Number One

The player respondents think who is most likely to finish 2020 as world number one is Novak Djokovic with 42.1% of all respondents putting the Serb as their top pick.

Only eight different players were selected as potential candidates for the top spot, and they are as follows:

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #1
Novak Djoković 42.1%
Rafael Nadal 25.0%
Roger Federer 19.1%
Dominic Thiem 5.3%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 4.6%
Daniil Medvedev 2.6%
Andrey Rublev 0.7%
Fernando Verdasco 0.7%

Which Players Are Picked Most Often To Finish Somewhere Within The Top 8?

Atp Finals Draw

Like the number one spot, Djokovic also tops this list as he features in 96.7% of all respondents picks. Federer is joint top with 294 votes.

That means just ten fans of the 304 picks I used when compiling this post didn't have either Novak or Roger as part of their picks. Nadal is showing at 93% but I put that down to Fed-fan bias as he's just as likely as those two, if not more than Federer to finish in the top eight.

Player % Of Respondents Who Think They Will Finish Within the Top Eight
Novak Djoković 96.7%
Roger Federer 96.7%
Dominic Thiem 94.1%
Rafael Nadal 93.4%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 91.4%
Daniil Medvedev 85.5%
Alexander Zverev 81.6%
Denis Shapovalov 27.6%
Stan Wawrinka 17.8%
Matteo Berrettini 14.5%
Félix Auger-Aliassime 13.8%
Andrey Rublev 9.9%
Karen Khachanov 9.9%
Grigor Dimitrov 7.2%
Kei Nishikori 7.2%
Alex de Minaur 6.6%
Roberto Bautista Agut 6.6%
David Goffin 5.9%
Nick Kyrgios 5.3%
Andy Murray 4.6%
Gaël Monfils 3.9%
Diego Schwartzman 2.6%
Jannik Sinner 2.6%
Juan Martín del Potro 2.6%
Fabio Fognini 2.0%
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 1.3%
Alexander Bublik 0.7%
Borna Ćorić 0.7%
Cameron Norrie 0.7%
Cristian Garín 0.7%
Fernando Verdasco 0.7%
Frances Tiafoe 0.7%
Guido Pella 0.7%
John Isner 0.7%
Lucas Pouille 0.7%
Milos Raonic 0.7%
Nikoloz Basilashvili 0.7%
Pablo Carreño Busta 0.7%
Reilly Opelka 0.7%

Which Players Are Most Likely To Finish 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8?

With 42.1% of respondents putting Djokovic as the number one, what about the other positions? Well, Djokovic is also joint top here with Rafael Nadal as 32.2% placed the Serb and the Spaniard as the Year-End #2.

Year-End #2

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #2
Novak Djoković 32.2%
Rafael Nadal 32.2%
Dominic Thiem 9.2%
Daniil Medvedev 8.6%
Roger Federer 7.9%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 7.9%
Alexander Zverev 1.3%
Frances Tiafoe 0.7%

Year-End #3

Respondents believe that Dominic Thiem is most likely to break the Big Three stranglehold with 20.4% picking the Austrian to end the season ranked third in the world.

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #3
Dominic Thiem 20.4%
Rafael Nadal 17.8%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 16.4%
Daniil Medvedev 15.1%
Roger Federer 15.1%
Novak Djoković 12.5%
Alexander Zverev 0.7%
David Goffin 0.7%
Félix Auger-Aliassime 0.7%
John Isner 0.7%

Year-End #4

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #4
Dominic Thiem 24.3%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 21.1%
Roger Federer 14.5%
Daniil Medvedev 13.2%
Rafael Nadal 9.9%
Alexander Zverev 8.6%
Novak Djoković 3.9%
Stan Wawrinka 2.6%
Alex de Minaur 0.7%
Guido Pella 0.7%
Karen Khachanov 0.7%

Year-End #5

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #5
Stefanos Tsitsipas 21.7%
Roger Federer 19.1%
Daniil Medvedev 17.8%
Dominic Thiem 13.2%
Alexander Zverev 10.5%
Novak Djoković 4.6%
Rafael Nadal 4.6%
Andrey Rublev 1.3%
Denis Shapovalov 1.3%
Stan Wawrinka 1.3%
Alex de Minaur 0.7%
Alexander Bublik 0.7%
Andy Murray 0.7%
David Goffin 0.7%
Félix Auger-Aliassime 0.7%
Grigor Dimitrov 0.7%
Nikoloz Basilashvili 0.7%

Year-End #6

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #6
Alexander Zverev 21.1%
Dominic Thiem 13.8%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 13.8%
Daniil Medvedev 12.5%
Roger Federer 12.5%
Denis Shapovalov 5.9%
Félix Auger-Aliassime 3.9%
Matteo Berrettini 3.3%
Karen Khachanov 2.0%
Rafael Nadal 2.0%
Gaël Monfils 1.3%
Grigor Dimitrov 1.3%
Kei Nishikori 1.3%
Alex de Minaur 0.7%
Cameron Norrie 0.7%
David Goffin 0.7%
Jannik Sinner 0.7%
Lucas Pouille 0.7%
Nick Kyrgios 0.7%
Roberto Bautista Agut 0.7%
Stan Wawrinka 0.7%

Year-End #7

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #7
Alexander Zverev 32.2%
Daniil Medvedev 12.5%
Roger Federer 5.9%
Denis Shapovalov 5.3%
Dominic Thiem 4.6%
Matteo Berrettini 4.6%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 4.6%
Karen Khachanov 3.3%
Andrey Rublev 2.6%
Félix Auger-Aliassime 2.6%
Grigor Dimitrov 2.6%
Kei Nishikori 2.6%
Stan Wawrinka 2.6%
Juan Martín del Potro 2.0%
Alex de Minaur 1.3%
Diego Schwartzman 1.3%
Gaël Monfils 1.3%
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 1.3%
Nick Kyrgios 1.3%
Roberto Bautista Agut 1.3%
Andy Murray 0.7%
Borna Ćorić 0.7%
Cristian Garín 0.7%
David Goffin 0.7%
Jannik Sinner 0.7%
Rafael Nadal 0.7%

Year-End #8

Player % of Respondents Who Ranked them #8
Denis Shapovalov 15.1%
Stan Wawrinka 10.5%
Alexander Zverev 7.2%
Matteo Berrettini 6.6%
Félix Auger-Aliassime 5.9%
Andrey Rublev 5.3%
Roberto Bautista Agut 4.6%
Karen Khachanov 3.9%
Alex de Minaur 3.3%
Andy Murray 3.3%
Daniil Medvedev 3.3%
David Goffin 3.3%
Dominic Thiem 3.3%
Kei Nishikori 3.3%
Nick Kyrgios 3.3%
Grigor Dimitrov 2.6%
Roger Federer 2.6%
Fabio Fognini 2.0%
Diego Schwartzman 1.3%
Gaël Monfils 1.3%
Jannik Sinner 1.3%
Novak Djoković 1.3%
Rafael Nadal 1.3%
Stefanos Tsitsipas 1.3%
Juan Martín del Potro 0.7%
Milos Raonic 0.7%
Pablo Carreño Busta 0.7%
Reilly Opelka 0.7%

Which Players Were Picked The Least?

The players in the list below were only picked twice amongst 304 responses (some are technically only picked once as I think Verdasco is probably the same person entering twice 🙂 ), will any of them come good? I don't think it's unrealistic for Coric to have a good season if he's able to stay injury-free. The rest, unlikely 😆

  • Borna Coric
  • Pablo Carreño Busta
  • Cristian Garín
  • Milos Raonic
  • Fernando Verdasco
  • Frances Tiafoe
  • John Isner
  • Guido Pella
  • Nikoloz Basilashvili
  • Lucas Pouille
  • Reilly Opelka
  • Alexander Bublik
  • Cameron Norrie

Based on the results, it doesn't look like fans expect for the Big 3 stranglehold to end just yet, but what do you think of the results? Any surprises? Let me know in the comments.


Huge fan of Roger Federer. I watch all his matches from Grand Slam level right down to ATP 250. When I'm not watching or writing about tennis I play regularly myself and have a keen interest in tactics, equipment and technicalties of the sport.

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  1. In my opinion, I think the results are reasonable. Unless major health issues, the big 3 are still better and more consistent than the others,

  2. The top 8 are my top 8. In fact, Denis was my only newbie. I think I had Fed dropping a couple of places tho.. start of the year key for him. 🙈

      1. Will we get a prize?
        I think what the next crowd of players is discovering is how difficult it is to play at a top level week in and week out. They get on a roll and then start to perform poorly. Look at Zverev and a few others. That’s what makes the big 3 that much more challenging to surpass.

  3. I was surprised at how closely the overall results were in line with my predictions. The one unexpected result was that Felix got some votes for the top 8. I am a huge FAA fan, and hope that he does make it, but that would be a big jump, from No.21. Still, Berrettini made a very big jump this year, so it is not out of the question.

    It was fun seeing what people thought, and it looks like they took this seriously and made sensible predictions. It will be very interesting to see if we are close.

  4. Fun stuff, Jonathan. Interesting that the whole group of Raonic, Nishikori, Dimi etc never did rise to the very top and are now fading away with injuries, and getting on in age. Here comes a whole new crop of players getting ready to break through.
    I did put Djoker and Nadal 1 & 2. After all they are 6 & 5 years younger than Fed. I put Thiem and ST up there with Fed sliding a few spots.
    Like you Hartt, I don’t believe Felix is ready for the top 10 yet. It will be interesting to see how Shapo does. Will he rein in all those wild shots of his. Too bad, Nick is such a loose cannon. Has the ability and talent to play with the best of them.
    I’m happy to see all these ohbhs and serve & volley, rushing the net, etc. Gives hope for the future.

  5. I think we’ll have the same Top 7 but in a different order, and a new Top 8 (between Wawrinka, Khachanov, Aliassime, Shapovalov and Rublev).
    I hope Medvedev or Tsitsipas gets to the Nº1 spot. I chosed the russian, he has the mentality to win consistently.
    Djokovic and Nadal will be there, fading away but with enough points to contend in a close fight for the Top 3.
    Hopefully, Roger would make it to Top 4 or 5.

  6. Just updated this post as had quite a few more responses and also noticed I’d made an error on one section. So now has revised numbers, albeit not much change.

  7. My top 8 pick also, except the newbie (hesitated between Shapo and Sinner).
    Haha yes, quite surprised that nobody fooled around much. But Fiasco? Was it you, Jonathan? You always say he’s one of the most talented players, don’t ya 😆 Great job anyway, it was fun indeed!

    1. Nice. Even the ATP tweeted it. Just saw his Instagram too, looks like a keen parent tbh rather than a kid loving the game. Nobody is balancing on a BOSU ball playing against a wall at 4 or 5 😆

  8. There is a list of who’s the most likely player to finish the year in each position.
    However seems to be one statistic missing:
    In which position is it most likely for a particular player to finish the year?
    In other words, what is the expected top 8 composition by the end of the year?

    1. Wouldn’t that just be combining the tables I have already done with the top pick in each?


      1. No, because there are players who were not the top pick for any of the positions. Fed, for example. Thiem, on the other hand, is the top pick for both #4 and #3 and he can’t be at both positions! If a player is predicted to have an uncertain performance spread among several positions, people will guess a very evenly distributed ranking and so he’s unlikely to top pick for one of them (hello, Roger?…)
        You can do a weighed average for the most likely position Mr. X will occupy. Of course you will get results as “Fed will be at #3.8, Nadal #3.1 and Thiem at #3.6”.
        No problem: sort all of them out at the end.
        Use this for each player:
        1 x votes for #1 + 2 x votes for #2 +…
        Divide this sum by the total number of votes the player got to obtain the expected ranking.
        Sort the players by the expected ranking.

      2. Ok isn’t it just better to treat each particular ranking spot as individual so the highest number of votes secures that spot?

        If one player was top of the picks in 3rd spot, I just removed them from being included for later rankings, whether they were picked more often or not, like Thiem, for example, was picked more to be 4th than 3rd, but I put him third as he had the highest volume of picks of everyone in third spot.

        Will give it a go. Based on your formula below, Verdasco is going to be ranked #1 as he got just 2 votes, both for #1. So 2 / 2 😆

      1. Verdasco has always lacked the mental sturdiness to jump over the final barrier.
        (In slang: “choker”)

  9. Well, when I saw Jon’s original question as to who would be in the top 8 by the end of next year, a little voice in my head said “Not Djokovic”. Where it came from I know not, and I expect it’s totally delusional, but I guess only time will tell. I just thought I’d register it because I’ll surely have forgotten about it 11 months down the line …

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