Swedish tennis ruled the world between 1974 and 1988 with players like Bjorn Borg, Mats Wilander, Anders Jarryd, Stefan Edberg, Kent Carlsson, Henrik Sundstrom, Joakim Nystrom, Mikael Pernfors, Hans Simonsson and many more. Now Sweden get’s a player ranked within top 100 for the first time in 7 years with 21-year old Mikael Ymer.
After this golden era of Swedish tennis with 11 Grand Slams won by Borg, 7 Slams won by Wilander and 6 GS-titles from Edberg the Swedes had to adapt to a reality with players like Jonas Bjorkman (world number 4 in singles and No.1 in doubles), Thomas Enqvist (world No.4 in singles and a one time GS finalist in Melbourne 1999), Thomas Johansson (the last Swede to win a Grand Slam in singles back in 2002) and Magnus Norman (one-time slam finalist in French Open 2000).
After this generation Sweden only had Robin Soderling. Soderling was the first player to beat Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros 2009 and he reached the finals 2009 and 2010 but had to stop his career already in 2011. Soderling was ranked No.4 when he peaked. After Soderling Sweden has had 0 players ranked within the top 100 in men’s singles.
Mikael Ymer in the Top 100
Now Mikael Ymer, born 1998, is the first Swede to be ranked within the top 100 in 7 years. This week he won the Open d’Orleans Challenger title without losing a set all week. He won against Aljaz Bedene in the quarters, former world No.5 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the semis and today took the final also in straight sets against Gregoire Barrere. Ymer won the European Championships as a junior and reached the Wimbledon final (l. to Opelka) one year young in 2015 and has been the big hope for Swedish tennis since Soderling had to finish his career. Mikael Ymer is projected to reach No. 81 in the new rankings on Monday.
Mikael Ymer also moves up one place to No.9 on the “Race to Milan” tomorrow, surpassing Corentin Moutet. The Race to Milan is the NextGen rankings for players 21 and younger. Stefanos Tsitsipas is No.1 on this ranking at the moment.
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