Rafael Nadal named ITF world champion for the fifth time as Iga Swiatek is honored for the first time

Rafael Nadal Champion of Roland Garros 2022 Credit: Alamy

Rafael Nadal and Iga Swiatek are the big winners in tennis in 2022, with the Grand Slam champions having been named ITF World Champions of the Year.

Former world number 1 Nadal received the award after winning the Australian Open and French Open to become the outright leader of most Grand Slam singles titles won by a man.

The Spaniard, who sits in 22 majors, has lost just one Grand Slam match this year as he pulled out of his semi-final clash at Wimbledon ahead of the encounter against Nick Kyrgios and has left the US Open in the fourth round. He finished the year with a 39-8 win-loss record.

“I am very happy to be named ITF World Champion for the fifth time,” said Nadal. “When I first won the award in 2008, I didn’t expect to still be playing at such a high level 14 years later.

“It was really special to win the Australian Open for the second time, and of course to win Roland Garros. I’m really grateful for the support from my team and my fans all over the world and I’m already looking forward to the 2023 season.

Nadal is now tied with arch-rival Roger Federer for third place for most ITF World Champion awards with Pete Sampras second on six and Novak Djokovic leading on eight.

Swiatek has been the dominant player on the WTA Tour this year as she became world No. 1 in March and also won the French Open and the US Open.

The Pole has won eight titles in total and also enjoyed a 37-match winning streak from February to July for the longest WTA winning streak in 25 years.

“It’s been a big year for me, and such big awards show me how far I’ve come,” said the 21-year-old, who finished 67-9 in 2022.

“I appreciate it and want to thank the ITF. It wouldn’t have happened without my team, my family and my fans from Poland and all over the world. Consider this our joint reward for incredible on-court adventures in 2022.”

Czech duo Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova have won the ITF Women’s Doubles World Championship title after winning the Australian Open, Wimbledon and US Open as a duo. Their win at Flushing Meadows earned them a career Grand Slam.

“It is a great honor to be awarded the ITF Women’s Doubles World Championship title for the third time and I am grateful for the results and the memories I have accumulated with my doubles partner this year,” said said Krejcikova.

“We hope our success will continue to inspire young children around the world and help them believe in their dreams on and off the pitch. I am so grateful to my family, my coaching staff, my mentors, my partners , my fans and all those who supported me and constantly support me to achieve my dreams.

Rajeev Ram of the United States and Britain’s Joe Salisbury have been named the 2022 ITF World Champions in men’s doubles after winning the US Open and becoming world number 1.

“We are very honored to have won this prestigious award from the ITF in recognition of the successes we have had,” said Salisbury. “We are very proud of everything we have achieved this year.”

The article Rafael Nadal named ITF world champion for the fifth time while Iga Swiatek honored for the first time appeared first on Tennis365.com.

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