Cilic, Thiem Qualify To Complete Singles Field For 2018 Nitto ATP Finals
Croatia’s Marin Cilic and Austria’s Dominic Thiem have clinched the two final spots at the prestigious season-ending tournament, to be held from 11-18 November at The O2 in London, as a result of Friday's play at the Rolex Paris Masters.
Cilic has secured his place at the season finale for the fourth time (also 2014, 2016-17), while Thiem will compete for the third consecutive year. They will join World No. 1 Rafael Nadal of Spain, Serbia’s five-time former champion Novak Djokovic, Swiss six-time former titlist Roger Federer, Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina, Germany’s Alexander Zverev and first-time participant Kevin Anderson of South African at the elite event.
This season, the 30-year-old Cilic claimed his second Fever-Tree Championships crown at The Queen’s Club in June (d. Djokovic), and reached his third Grand Slam championship final (also 2014 US Open and 2017 Wimbledon) at the Australian Open in January (l. to Federer). He also advanced to semi-finals at two Masters 1000 tournaments — the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome (l. to A. Zverev) and the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati (l. to Djokovic) — plus the last four at the Tata Open Maharashtra (l. to Simon), an ATP World Tour 250-level event in Pune. World No. 7 Cilic, who rose to a career-high No. 3 in the ATP Rankings on 29 January 2018, has won at least one ATP World Tour title for 11 consecutive years (2008-2018). His 18 career titles are the second-most for a Croatian behind Goran Ivanisevic with 22 crowns.
Thiem, 25, has recorded 50+ match wins for the second time in his career — compiling a 53-17 match record with three titles, bettered only by his 2016 season when he posted a 58-24 mark with four titles. The World No. 8 has lifted trophies in 2018 at three ATP World Tour 250-level tournaments — the Argentina Open in Buenos Aires (d. Bedene), the Open Parc Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Lyon (d. Simon) and the St. Petersburg Open (d. Klizan). He also finished as runner-up at Roland Garros (l. to Nadal), his first Grand Slam championship final, and for the second successive year at the Mutua Madrid Open (l. to Zverev), a Masters 1000 event.
In the doubles field, Oliver Marach/Mate Pavic, Juan Sebastian Cabal/Robert Farah, Lukasz Kubot/Marcelo Melo, Jamie Murray/Bruno Soares, Mike Bryan/Jack Sock, Raven Klaasen/Michael Venus, Nikola Mektic/Alexander Peya and Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut have secured their places.
Per ATP rules, the doubles field will be determined on 5 November following the conclusion of the Rolex Paris Masters, the final tournament of the regular ATP World Tour season. On that date, it will be determined what the eight teams will be as both Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan and also Mike Bryan and Jack Sock currently have sufficient points in the ATP Doubles Race To London to secure a place at the season finale. Bob Bryan has been sidelined due to a hip injury since May, but he may be fit enough to return with his twin brother to the prestigious event.
2018 DRAW CEREMONY:
The draw for the 2018 Nitto ATP Finals will be conducted live on The One Show (from 7-7:30pm GMT) on BBC One television on Monday, 5 November.
2018 GROUP NAMES:
The Finals Club, an initiative launched by the ATP in 2015 as a way of celebrating the past champions and heritage of the season-ending tournament since its inception in 1970, will this year honour players from the 2000s. As such, the group names for singles and doubles will honour players who enjoyed remarkable success at the season finale during that decade:
- Group Guga Kuerten (containing the No. 1 seed) – 2000 champion
- Group Lleyton Hewitt (containing the No. 2 seed) – 2001 and 2002 champion
- Group Knowles/Nestor (containing the No. 1 seeds) – 2007 champions
- Group Llodra/Santoro (containing the No. 2 seeds) – 2005 champions
The Nitto ATP Finals welcomes more than 250,000 fans to The O2 arena annually, as well as generating global viewership figures reaching an average of 95 million viewers each year, as the ATP’s best eight singles players and doubles teams compete over eight days at the biggest indoor tennis tournament in the world.