The winner of the men’s final of the 2022 United States Open will become number one in the world. On Friday, the two players still alive to be first in the world won each of their semifinal matches. World number three Carlos Alcaraz of Spain defeated 22nd ranked Frances Tiafoe of the United States 6-7, 6-3, 6-1, 6-7, 6-3, while world number five Casper Ruud of Norway defeated 27th ranked Karen Khachanov of Russia, 7-6, 6-2, 5-7, 6-3.
Who is Currently No. 1?
The player currently number one was Daniil Medvedev of Russia. However Medvedev lost to the 23rd ranked Nick Kyrgios of Australia, 7-6, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, in the fourth round on Sunday. The first set tiebreak got everybody buzzing as Kyrgios beat Medvedev 13-11.
Rafael Nadal of Spain actually had the opportunity to be world number one if Ruud and Alcaraz both lost on Friday in the semifinals, but was not the case. You could make the argument Nadal deserves to be world number one as he was the only multi-major champion this year. He won the Australian Open and French Open.
According to Chris McKendry of ESPN, four male players reached their first United States Open semifinal at the same time since 1881. The 1881 championship happened to be the very first United States National Tennis Championships, and took place at Newport Casino in Newport, Rhode Island. The four men’s semifinalists included three Americans–Richard Sears of Boston, Massachusetts, Edward H. Gray and Samuel Shaw, and one Englishman, William Glyn of Wycliffe, England. In the semifinals, Glyn beat Shaw 6-2, 6-2, and Sears beat Gray 6-3, 6-0. In the final, Sears beat Glyn 6-0, 6-3, 6-2.
This was the first career grand slam semifinal for Khachanov, Alcaraz and Tiafoe. Ruud previously reached the 2022 French Open final and lost to Nadal, 6-3, 6-3, 6-0. Norway has never had a grand slam men’s singles tennis champion. Molla Bjurstedt won four straight United States Championships in women’s singles from 1915 to 1918.