Many fans had not heard of Arthur Fils twelve months ago. Today, at 19 years old, the Frenchman has established himself as one of the great talents of this sport and has starred in the year of his breakthrough, which has helped him win the Breakthrough of the Year 2023 award.
“I am very happy to win the Breakthrough of the Year award,” Fils confessed. “It has been an incredible year for me with many good memories. I hope next year will be better, but I want to thank you for the support around the world.”
Fils began the season outside the Top 250 of the Pepperstone ATP Rankings, but peaked at World No. 36 in October after reaching the final in Antwerp. The Frenchman’s most brilliant moment occurred at home last May, specifically, in Lyon, where he won his first title. He was the youngest ATP Tour champion in 2023.
Fils’ breakout season started from day one. He won his first nine matches of the year, which helped him lift the trophy at the Oeiras Challenger. In February, he took advantage of the opportunity to play at home, reaching the semi-finals in Montpellier and Marseille.
He finished the season on a high, appearing in the final of the Next Gen ATP Finals presented by NEOM in its first ATP tournament held in Saudi Arabia.
“It was a nice year, of course. I started at 250 but finished No. 36, so it’s pretty good,” Fils reflected. “It still could have been better. I lost some close games, but it’s just experience and I’ll try to do better next year.”
Fils beat out other #NextGenATP nominees such as Flavio Cobolli, Alex Michelsen, Dominic Stricker and Luca Van Assche to win the award. At 19 years old he joins Holger Rune, Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner as recent winners of the Breakthrough of the Year award.
Chosen by the players, the award is given to a #NextGenATP player who finishes in the Top 100 for the first time and has the greatest impact on the ATP Tour during that season so far.