Marcelo Andres Rios Mayorga (born December 26, 1975, in Santiago, Chile) is a former World No. 1 tennis player from Chile. Nicknamed Chino (Chinese), he became the first Latin American to reach the No. 1 position on the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) singles rankings in 1998.
1 Tennis career
Rios began playing tennis at the relatively-late age of 11 at the Sport Frances country club in Vitacura, Santiago. He was soon recognized for his talented left-hand and reserved personality.
Rios was ranked the world’s No. 1 junior tennis player in 1993 (he was the first male player from Latin America to achieve the top spot). He won the boys’ singles title at the US Open that year, and also captured his first Satellite tournament in Chile at the age of 17.
Rios turned professional in 1994. He won his first Challenger Series tournament at Dresden later that year. In 1995, he won his first top-level tour title at Bologna. He became the first Chilean to be ranked in the world’s top 10 in 1996.
In January 1998, Rios reached his first (and only) Grand Slam final at the Australian Open. Having been in strong form leading up to the final, he entered as a slight favourite against Petr Korda of the Czech Republic. But Korda was in inspired form and brushed Rios aside in straight sets 6-2, 6-2, 6-2.
In March 1998, Rios became the first Latin American male to reach the World No. 1 singles ranking after defeating Andre Agassi in the final of the Miami Masters (one of seven titles he won that year). Rios held the No. 1 ranking for six weeks, and ended the year ranked at No. 2 behind Pete Sampras. Rios is currently the only player to have held the No. 1 ranking despite never winning a Grand Slam singles title.
Rios met Giuliana Sotela of Costa Rica while training at the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy in Florida. They married in December 2000 in Santiago. Their only daughter, Constanza, was born in June 2001. A number of injuries and operations sidelined Rios from competition during much of this period, with his ranking dropping below the 300s.
In 2004, six years after claiming the No. 1 ranking, and after a long absence from the tour, Rios returned to competition with a 6-0, 6-0 victory at a Challenger Seriers tournament in Ecuador. Soon after, Rios and his wife split, and their marriage was annulled. During this period, Rios served as a sports commentator for a radio station in Chile.
On July 16, 2004, Rios announced his retirement from the sport. He organized a farewell tour across his home country, travelling through several cities, meeting with fans, offering tennis clinics, and playing friendly matches with international and local tennis players. The tour ended on December 22 2004, at a soccer stadium in Santiago, where he played his final tennis match against Guillermo Coria of Argentina.
Rios was remarried in April 2005 to model Eugenia “Kenita” Larrain, a former fiancee of soccer star Ivan Zamorano. The couple subsequently experienced a very public break up in September of the same year after an incident in Costa Rica in which Larrain was injured in an accident.
ATP Masters Series (5)
Grand Slam Cup (1)
ATP Tour (12)
No. Date Tournament Opponent in the final Score
1. May 22, 1995 Bologna (Italy) Marcelo Filippini (Uruguay) 6-2 6-4
2. July 24, 1995 Amsterdam (Netherlands) Jan Siemerink (Netherlands) 6-4 7-5 6-4
3. October 2, 1995 Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) Mark Philippoussis (Australia) 7-6(6) 6-2
4. May 20, 1996 Sankt Polten (Austria) Felix Mantilla (Spain) 6-2 6-4
5. April 21, 1997 Monte Carlo (Monaco) Alex Corretja (Spain) 6-4 6-3 6-3
6. January 12, 1998 Auckland (New Zealand) Richard Fromberg (Australia) 4-6 6-4 7-6(3)
7. March 9, 1998 Indian Wells, California (United States) Greg Rusedski (Great Britain) 6-3 6-7(15) 7-6(4) 6-4
8. March 16, 1998 Key Biscayne, Florida (United States) Andre Agassi (United States) 7-5 6-3 6-4
9. May 11, 1998 Rome (Italy) Albert Costa (Spain) walkover
10. May 18, 1998 Sankt Polten (Austria) Vincent Spadea (United States) 6-2 6-0
11. September 28, 1998 Grand Slam Cup (Germany) Andre Agassi (United States) 6-4 2-6 7-6 5-7 6-3
12. October 12, 1998 Singapore Mark Woodforde (Australia) 6-4 6-2
13. May 3, 1999 Hamburg (Germany) Mariano Zabaleta (Argentina) 6-7(5) 7-5 5-7 7-6(5) 6-2
14. 1999 Sankt Polten (Austria) Mariano Zabaleta (Argentina) 4-4 ret.
15. October 11, 1999 Singapore Mikael Tillstrom (Sweden) 6-2 7-6(5)
16. July 17, 2000 Umag (Croatia) Mariano Puerta (Argentina) 7-6(1) 4-6 6-3
17. January 1, 2001 Doha (Qatar) Bohdan Ulihrach (Czech Republic) 6-3 2-6 6-3
18. September 24, 2001 Hong Kong (China) Rainer Schuttler (Germany) 7-6(3) 6-2
1. July 24, 1995 Amsterdam (Netherlands)
Partner: Sjeng Schalken (Netherlands) Wayne Arthurs (Australia)/Neil Broad (Great Britain) 7-6 6-2
Scottsdale, AZ, U.S.A.
Rome, Italy (Masters Series)
Boston, MA, U.S.A.
Australian Open (Grand Slam)
Monte Carlo, Monaco (Masters Series)
Vina del Mar, Chile
Scottsdale, AZ, U.S.A. (with Sjeng Schalken)