It’s that time of the year again. The time to look into the crystal ball and predict what will happen in 2015.
So what will happen this year?
Well here are ten things that I think will happen in 2015.
If you agree, or disagree, let me know in the comments section below.
- Novak Djokovic will still be the number 1 player at the end of 2015.
With Djokovic being so consistent on the tour I can’t see him being overtaken in the rankings this year.
In 2014 he won 7 titles, the most out of all the players on the tour.
With Nadal and Federer – the two best chances to overtake him – having question marks over them due to injury and age, it is hard to see anyone challenging Djokovic in the rankings over 52 weeks.
With ‘the Djoker’ being good on each surface, and the inconsistency of others to put together a full season of results, it is hard to see anyone challenging him for the number 1 mantle.
- Thanasi Kokkinakis will have a break out year and crack the top 70.
At some stage this year Thanasi Kokkinakis will have a breakout tournament like Nick Kyrgios at Wimbledon in 2014.
If you compare the pair, with Kokkinakis being 12 months younger than Kyrgios, the South Australian comes out on top in plenty of areas.
He is currently 32 places higher than his mate when you compare their rankings at their age.
After training in Dubai with Roger Federer during the pre-season, the Australian is ready to go in 2015.
I see him having a breakout year this year.
He has all the weapons like Kyrgios and he is solidly built to adjust to the ATP tour.
I see him cracking the top 70 by the end of the season and have some stellar results along the way.
- Australia will have a new number 1 player.
When the rankings are released next week, Nick Kyrgios will be the new Australian number 1.
Lleyton Hewitt will lose his 250 points from winning the Brisbane International last year which will put Kyrgios at the top of the rankings.
He will be the Australian no.1 for the first time in his career.
- Australia – at some stage in 2015 – will have ten players who crack the top 100.
At the start of 2015 Australia will have 5 players inside the top 100.
By the end of the year up to ten players, at some stage of the season, could make it into the top 100.
Those players who could the current 5 include: Thanasi Kokkinakis, Luke Saville, Jason Kubler, John Millman and James Duckworth.
Kokkinakis and Millman are two players who should move into the top 100. Both can produce the results to get them there.
The others are bold predictions but anything is possible if those three players have good years.
Australian tennis is about to rise again.
- Andy Murray will slip outside of the top ten in the rankings.
Last year Murray fell outside of the top ten in the rankings for the first time since 2008. I have a feeling he will fall back outside of the top ten in 2015.
Coming back from a back injury is tough, and many players have struggled to get back to their best after having one.
Murray did that in 2014 and struggled to get back to the form of 2012 and 2013.
With the next generation coming through, and the strength of Djokovic, Federer and Nadal, Murray might struggle to get the results to stay in the top ten.
Late last year he had to move back to the ATP 250 events to qualify for London, and gain some valuable points.
He may have to do the same this year.
I can’t see the Brit having a good 2015.
- Alexander Zverev and Borna Coric will move into the top 60 in the world. Elias Ymer will be inside the top 100.
These three youngsters –like Kokkinakis- are one’s to look out for in the future.
Zverev (137), Coric (102), and Ymer (228) are all players who are either 18 or 17 years old.
Expect 2015 to be all about these four players.
Zverev and Coric have already shown results last year with Zverev making the semi-finals in Hamburg and Coric making the semi-finals in Basel.
Coric has already made the top 100 by reaching 89.
I expect all three players to enter the top 100 at some stage in 2015.
For Zverev and Coric – who are almost there – they will push towards the top 60.
- The ATP will have a new Grand Slam champion.
Last year saw two players become Grand Slam Champions for the first time.
Marin Cilic (US Open) and Stan Wawrinka (Australian Open) tasted Grand Slam success for the first time. I expect that to continue with at least one new winner in 2015.
Who will that be? Take your pick from Kei Nishikori, Milos Raonic, Tomas Berdych, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Grigor Dimitrov.
2014 taught us one thing. If you can get a run going, and play 7 strong matches, you can now beat the top 4 and win a Grand Slam.
2015 can deliver it again.
- Kei Nishikori will be the best player outside of the ‘top four’
The second half of the season belonged to Nishikori. He scored 56 percent of his points in the last 3 months of the season.
He was the next best player behind Federer and Djokovic during that time.
I expect that to continue in 2015.
He is excellent on all surfaces and has really lifted another gear with Michael Chang as his coach.
He is also the youngest player inside the top 7 in the world.
2015 could be a big year for Nishikori. If he continues his form from 2014 then he will be among those in the ‘top four.’
- Rafael Nadal will win the French Open again.
As long as Nadal is fit for the French Open, he will win the event for the 10th time in his career.
He is 66 wins and 1 loss at the venue and the only player to beat him is out of the sport at the moment.
Nadal is the king of clay, he will show that again in 2015.
- Jason Kubler will become Australia’s best clay courter and move into the top 100.
In 2014 Kubler won 5 times as many matches as any other Australian on the tour on clay.
He won 52 matches as he cracked the top 200 for the first time and won his first ATP Challenger title.
In 2015 he continues to attack the Challenger scene and the ATP tour on clay.
Kubler, who has fragile knees, can only play on clay as the hard courts create injuries with his knees.
As a result he has become one of Australia’s best players on clay in the last few years.
In 2015 he will become Australia’s best and achieve the best result on clay by an Australian.
Kubler will be someone to look out for in 2015. His clay game can cause trouble to the best and he is capable of causing some damage at the big events.
He will also crack the top 100 for the first time in his career.