The International Tennis Federation (ITF) announced on Wednesday that Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic have been named the 2013 ITF World Champions. Williams has won the honor four times in her career, and Djokovic has claimed the title each of the last three years.
While Williams’ win shouldn’t surprise anyone — she did win a ridiculous 78 of the 82 singles matches she played in 2013 and won two Grand Slam titles — Djokovic’s win has raised a few eyebrows. Although Djokovic is certainly one of the best tennis players on the planet and had an excellent year, it’s hard to ignore the impressiveness of Rafael Nadal returning from a knee injury to win 10 titles, including both the French and US Open, in 2013. Nadal is also ranked first in the world, ahead of Djokovic.
Ricci Bitti, the head of the ITF, briefly touched on the rationale behind selecting Djokovic:
Rafael Nadal made a remarkable comeback from injury with two Grand Slam wins, but it is Novak Djokovic’s consistent results across all four Slams, Davis Cup and the ATP World Tour Finals that see him named World Champion (ITF Tennis).
Congratulations to both Williams and Djokovic for their awards. Follow the attached links to see the other athletes honored by the ITF.
[Source: ITF Tennis]