In every ATP season there seems to be a couple of players that come out of nowhere and surprise all tennis fans with how well they play.
For example, in 2006, Novak Djokovic came from around No. 70 in the rankings, and eventually by the end of the season, rose to 16th in the world. He has since become one of the most popular players on the ATP Tour.
Some of the players on this list you may not know but I think you will know by the end of the 2010 ATP season. This list consists of players that are no higher than 77 in the rankings but could be much higher later in the year.
Giraldo turned pro in 2006. Giraldo currently stands at 93rd in the ATP Tour rankings. At his highest last year was ranked 107th in the world.
He recently made it to the quarterfinals of a tournament in Chennai, India where he lost to Marin Cilic.
Giraldo has been a member of the Colombian Davis Cup Team. Giraldo's ATP singles record currently stands at 11-20. I expect to see him become at least in the top 50 by the end of the season due to the fact that he has great speed. I feel Giraldo could go pretty far at the French Open.
De Bakker turned pro in 2006 and currently stands at 81st in the world in the rankings. Last year, De Bakker's highest ranking was 96th in the world.
De Bakker recently made it to the quarterfinals of a tournament in Chennai, India where he eventually lost to Janko Tipsarevic.
In 2006, De Bakker finished first in the rankings on the junior circuit and also won the Wimbledon juniors that year. De Bakker is a player I feel that could be one of the best serve and volleyers in the game due to the fact that he is 6'4". I think in the next couple of years, De Bakker will be compared to the likes of a Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Lacko turned pro in 2005 and currently stands at 74th in the world in the rankings. Last year, Lacko's highest ranking was 82nd.
Lacko recently made it to the quarterfinals of the same tournament as De Bakker and Giraldo in Chennai, India. Lacko lost to Dudi Sela in the quarterfinals.
Lacko has been a member of the Slovakian Davis Cup team where he has a record of 6-6. Last season, Lacko had his best season of his young ATP Tour and I expect him to continue that trend this season on the ATP Tour.
Brands currently stands at 94th in the world in the rankings. Last year, Brands' highest ranking was 92nd.
Last year near the end of the season Brands made it to the semifinals of a tournament in Salzburg, Austria before losing to Michael Berrer.
Brands is also quite tall like De Bakker at 6'5", and I also feel that Brands could be one of the most underrated servers on the ATP Tour. I expect to see Brands be recognized the most this season at the French Open, a tournament he made two years ago.
Falla is somewhat old at 26, but I feel this could be the year in which Falla has his breakout year. He currently stands at 77th in the world in the rankings.
Falla recently made it to the round of 16 of a tournament in Brisbane, Australia where he would eventually lose to American, Wayne Odesnik.
For most of the 2007, Falla was ranked in the top 100 in the world. Also in 2007, he became the first Columbian since 1982 in the top 100 in the rankings. I expect this to be Falla's breakout season due to the fact that he ended the 2009 ATP season very well.