Roger and Ivan....i been following Ivan since he turned pro and the way he played vs Andy and Roger this year scares me..he's jump on different level now..not only the serve but the onehand-backhand is just scary.
Ljubicic because he's been playing non-stop all year and has singlehandedly carried out a victory over the Americans in US. Rog and Marat would be the best players anytime of the year, so Ivan gets my vote on this thread.
FEDERER 17 & Counting (fingers crossed)
SAFIN 2 and Out (T.T)
Have to agree with those 'supporting' Ivan on this one - in terms of most improved player there's simply no competition, although of course Roger has beaten him on the 3 times they've played. But Federer will no doubt have his purple patch(es) later in the year and can be suitably praised then, whereas Ivan might get too knackered to sustain his stunning form and should be credited now.
The problem for Roger is that expectations are now pegged so sky-high that even though he has won 3 ATP titles and Koolong so far in 2005, missing the AO is seen as a big black mark on his record - plus we all know he can play even better. As for Marat, he is the only Slam winner and that's hugely impressive too, but until he is firmly entrenched in a winning groove it's hard to credit him on one tournament alone (and Davis Cup). Although it was non-ATP and he wasn't serious, being bagelled by Sanguinetti in the Hopman Cup is still truly embarrassing, and did happen this year ... Hewitt has had a good 2005 too, even though he lost in the AO final, as has Pim Pim with 2 ATP titles.