2020 was a down year for many athletes and sports as a whole, but not so for Vasek Pospisil.
The Vernon-raised tennis pro came back from injury to post arguably his best year of singles results since coming onto the ATP scene in 2007.
On Monday the 30-year-old was named the recipient of the ATP’s Comeback Player of the Year Award. Voted on by fellow members of the ATP tour, the title is befitting of a player who started the year ranked 149th in the world and finished ranked 61st.
Pospisil spent the majority of 2019 sidelined by injury. He underwent surgery on a herniated disk in January of that year, which kept him away from competition until the Wimbledon Championships, where he lost in the first round to fellow Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime.
Known throughout his career as a stronger doubles player, he still managed to reach the 2019 Davis Cup finals alongside Denis Shapovalov, marking Canada’s first trip to the finals in the tournament’s 119-year history.
But in 2020 Pospisil proved he was more than a doubles specialist. He went to Montpellier with a protected ranking before upsetting world-ranked Number 10 David Goffin in three sets to advance to his first ATP final since 2014.
He then reached the fourth round of the US Open, upsetting No. 8 seed Roberto Bautista Agut to join Shapovalov and Auger-Aliassime in the most Canadian-filled Round of 16 in singles Grand Slam history.
In response to the news, Pospisil shared a video to Twitter with him holding the Comeback Player trophy.
— Vasek Pospisil (@VasekPospisil) December 21, 2020
“It really means a lot to me, so I just want to give a big thank-you to all of my fellow ATP players on the tour that voted for me to win this award, and also a big thanks to my team who did a really great job, and my sponsors who stuck with me through thick and thin,” he said.
“Really grateful to be here and hoping to have a great year next year.”