Harrison Reflects On Journey To New Career-High Ranking
Five years ago, as a 20 year old, American Ryan Harrison reached No. 43 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. It seemed like he would only continue rising.
But his journey, like most, has had its share of peaks and valleys. On Monday, Harrison reached a new career high of No. 42. He reflected on the milestone and his recent path on social media:
To my family, friends, coaches and fans,
Those who know me well will know that today is a big day for me and I wanted to write a note to say thank you to all of those who have supported me through what has been a very difficult time in my career.
My whole life, I've been driven to be the best. I've always had a burning desire to be great. My progression as a tennis player was always following this path. I had a vision of where I wanted to be and the steps required to get there. As a junior I established myself as one of the best in the nation and achieved these steps, moving forward and becoming a top 10 international U18 player by the age of 15.
The next step was the most exciting and what I'd always dreamed of – professional tennis. As I started my pro career, I was immediately able to achieve what few had done before me, winning an ATP level match at the age of 15. This was the next step in what was becoming an exciting journey and I reached many milestones over the next few years.
Two months after my 20th birthday in July 2012, I found myself at a career high ranking of 43. I was in the perfect position to continue my move towards the top of the game, everything was on track.
Then came the setbacks – finishing 2012 was tough. As you improve on tour the competition gets so much tougher. I finished the year with a 2-10 record on tour and by July 2013 I was back outside the Top 100. My struggle continued and by October 2014 I had dropped down to 197. This was not my vision and I did not even recognise myself on court.
My frustration was showing and over the next few years I went from being a top competitor, passionate tennis player and fan to being so scared of what I was going to get out of myself each day that I didn't even want to go on court. I reached the point where I felt as if I was never going to be back at the top of the game again.
My career dreams were disappearing and as much as I loved tennis, feeling like a disappointment makes anything tough to deal with. Last year after Wimbledon I even contemplated whether I should stop playing entirely.
To my wife, my parents, my siblings, my longtime manager and friend Ben Crandell, my entire coaching staff and team, all the coaches who have ever been a part of this journey with me – thank you for your love and ongoing support. Today, five years later we have reached a new career high!
I am so excited and motivated to keep going and continue taking those steps to reach my goals and I am beyond thankful to all my fans around the world who have stayed with me and supported me at every stage – thank you!