For every Andrey Rublev or Daniil Medvedev that makes a breakthrough in the men’s game at a young age, there are dozens more for whom climbing the rankings might take a little bit more time.

Case in point: their compatriot, Aslan Karatsev.

The 27-year-old Russian started the season ranked outside of the top 100, but a semifinal showing at the Australian Open, along with a deep run in Dubai this past week, has helped him crack the top 40 for the first time after grinding away for more than a decade.

With the first Masters tournament of the year kicking off this week in Miami, there will be plenty of late bloomers among the seeds and potential floaters. Here’s a look at several of the players that pushed through at a later point in their careers, but are still expecting to make more moves forward.

1

John Millman

The Baseline Top 5:
Active late bloomers
on the ATP Tour

The Baseline Top 5: Active late bloomers on the ATP Tour

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It’s a testament to perseverance that the Australian will be among the seeds in Florida. Millman turned pro in 2006, but didn’t reach his first final on the main tour until 2018 during the spring clay-court stretch at the age of 28. However, his most impressive accomplishment came later that year when he knocked Roger Federer out of the US Open and advanced to his first major quarterfinal. At the end of last year, Millman claimed his first ATP Tour title in Kazakhstan—at 31 years old.

2

Adrian Mannarino

The Baseline Top 5:
Active late bloomers
on the ATP Tour

The Baseline Top 5: Active late bloomers on the ATP Tour

In that final, Millman faced a player who had traveled a similar career arc: Mannarino, who contested his first career championship match five years earlier when he was 26. From there, the Frenchman played five more finals before finally winning his first ATP Tour title in 2019 on grass in Rosmalen. Mannarino has been a consistent member of the top 40 for several seasons now and in Miami, the 32-year-old will be seeded yet again.

3

Dan Evans

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The Baseline Top 5:
Active late bloomers
on the ATP Tour

The Baseline Top 5: Active late bloomers on the ATP Tour

Commitment and focus were concerns early on for the talented Englishman: He didn’t crack the top 100 until a month before his 26th birthday in 2016. At the start of the next season, Evans reached his first career final, but shortly after that, he was banned from the game for a year due to a failed drug test. Clawing his way back up the rankings and past his career-high, Evans won his first ATP title at one of the Australian Open tune-ups this year. In Miami, he’ll be among the top 25 seeded players.

4

Jan-Lennard Struff

The Baseline Top 5:
Active late bloomers
on the ATP Tour

The Baseline Top 5: Active late bloomers on the ATP Tour

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The tournament in Miami is unique among the Masters events in that it seeds 32, all of whom will receive a first-round bye. Though a number of top players have dropped out, the field is still strong, with 30 of the 32 having won a title before, the exceptions being the young Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime and the 30-year-old German Jan-Lennard Struff. Unlike Auger-Aliassime, however, Struff has yet to reach a singles final on the main tour. He’s spent most of the past six years ranked in the top 100, while also performing solidly in doubles. With his strong all-court game, a true singles breakthrough should happen at some point.

5

Facundo Bagnis

The Baseline Top 5:
Active late bloomers
on the ATP Tour

The Baseline Top 5: Active late bloomers on the ATP Tour

During the just-completed “Golden Swing” of clay-court tournaments, Argentine players won the first two events and just missed out on a clean sweep. The next-to-last man standing was Bagnis, who played the first final of his long career at 31 in Santiago, Chile. That run came two weeks after he reached his first career semifinal in Cordoba at the start of the stretch. After peaking at 55 in the world in 2016, Bagnis fell out of the top 100 several months later and has yet to make it back. If his recent run is any indication, though, a return could be imminent.