Although 2017 was a glorious renaissance for Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, it was a frustrating series of injuries for other Top-10 stalwarts. It was a fun year that opened greater winning opportunities for younger and newer faces, but the ATP tour was certainly weaker without the following proven superstars:
2017 Record: 32-8 record
Titles: Doha and Eastbourne
Ranking: No. 12
The Serb was the most dominant player heading in 2016, holding all Grand Slam titles after the French Open. But injuries have contributed to his slump in 2017. By the Wimbledon quarterfinals he could not go on with a right elbow injury.
“It is the most important for me to recover, to be able to play injury free for as long as possible, to compete in the sport that has given me so much, the sport I love,” Djokovic posted on his web site. “Of course I want to return to the winning form, to win again, to win the trophies.”
For now, he bides his time with rest and recovery, hoping to return to glory in 2018. He's scheduled to play Doha starting on January 1.
2017 Record: 25-10 record
Ranking: No. 16
Murray remained the No. 1 player in the world on the strength of his second-half charge in 2016. But the grind of his grueling matches and a nagging hip injury forced him withdraw from the US Open and end his year early. Two months later, coach Ivan Lendl departed, and Murray’s timeline for a comeback is still in doubt.
He competed with Roger Federer at a charity match in Glasgow in early November, but insisted that he needed to be able to play 100 percent without injury before he returns. He's scheduled to play Brisbane to kick off 2018.
2017 Record: 26-11
Ranking: No. 9
The 32-year-old Wawrinka tried to win his fourth major in as many years when he got back to the French Open final. After getting blitzed by Nadal, he was never the same. In early August, he announced that an injured knee prevented him from finishing the year. Nearly three months would pass until he could get back to hitting balls in practice.
On Friday, he held a press conference stating he was shocked by coach Magnus Norman's exit and is not 100 percent healthy yet, but still plans to play the Australian Open.
2017 Record: 30-10
Ranking: No. 22
The Japanese star failed to win a title for the first time since 2011. In August, he joined the ranks of the wounded when he withdrew from Cincinnati with a torn tendon in his right wrist. His absence was missed in the Asian swing, and he’s been rehabilitating after deciding that he would not undergo surgery.
The 28-year-old should be back in time for Brisbane, joining a packed draw that includes Murray, Milos Raonic, Nadal and defending champion Grigor Dimitrov.
2017 Record: 29-12
Ranking: No. 24
Raonic has been ravaged by injuries the past few years. He was plagued with a wrist injury before he called it year in October with a calf strain.
His best effort was a five-set victory over Alexander Zverev at Wimbledon, but he was swept by Federer in the quarterfinals. Will he be able to get healthy and play at a high level for all of 2018?