Top Pickleball Players: Who’s at the Top of the Sport?

If you haven’t been living under a rock for the last few years, you’ll be well aware of the growth of pickleball. It’s simply exploded. And with this growth in popularity, we are seeing many tennis players transition over resulting in fierce competition.

As it stands, the top pickleball players in 2024 are:

  • JW Johnson (#1 singles, #3 doubles)
  • Ben Johns (#2 singles, #2 doubles)
  • Colin Johns (#1 doubles)
  • Anna Leigh Waters (#1 singles, #1 doubles)
  • Andrea Koop (#2 doubles)
  • Salome Devidze (#2 singles)

But these are only a glimpse of the best players that pickleball currently has to offer. Read on we cover the top-ranked pickleball players and discuss their story of how they came to be the best.

A Quick Word on Pickleball Rankings

pickleball court with yellow ball

Unlike most sports with a unified ranking system, pickleball isn’t quite there yet. There are, in fact, several organizations that track pickleball rankings, and they all use different criteria. This means that the best pickleball players in 2024 vary depending on which organization you go by.

The different organizations include:

In our opinion, the best ranking system to go by is WPR. This is because they are attempting to integrate the ranks of various other organizations. As an example, the PPA tracks the outcome of their tournaments, not others. So players who compete elsewhere don’t get any ranking points which isn’t exactly fair.

As a result, we’ll use WPR’s rankings going forward.

Read More: How to Play Pickleball (The Hottest Game Going!)


Men’s Doubles Rankings

Rank Player Points Country State/City
1 Colin Johns 14750 USA Texas
2 Ben Johns 14500 USA Texas
3 JW Johnson 13000 USA Florida
4 Riley Newman 12625 USA Texas
4 Matt Wright 12625 USA Kansas
6 Dekel Bar 10800 Israel Haifa
7 Dylan Frazier 9200 USA Missouri
8 Andrei Daescu 6751 USA Florida
9 Zane Navratil 6421 USA Texas
10 AJ Koller 5950 USA Texas

Men’s Singles Rankings

Rank Player Points Country State
1 JW Johnson 13250 USA Florida
2 Ben Johns 11957 USA Texas
3 Federico Staksrud 8500 USA Florida
4 Zane Navratil 7042 USA Texas
5 Tyson McGuffin 6988 USA Idaho
6 Julian Arnold 5162 USA Texas
7 Dylan Frazier 4618 USA Missouri
8 Hunter Johnson 4386 USA Texas
9 James Ignatowich 4235 USA Florida
10 Jay Devilliers 3165 USA Kansas

Read More: Best Ping Pong Players of All Time


The Top Pickleball Players (Male)

JW Johnson


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  • DoB: November 6, 2002
  • Turned pro: 2020
  • Playing hand: Right

JW Johnson may be a latecomer to pickleball, but this hasn’t stopped him from leapfrogging the rest of the competition to become the best pickleball player in the world, at least, when it comes to doubles.

Like many pro pickleball players, Johnson transitioned from tennis, yet he lacks the experience of performing at the top level as he was born in 2002, making him one of the youngest elite players.

He claimed his first professional win at just 19 years of age and overcame the legend Ben Johns two years later. In the subsequent year, he swept all three gold medals at a tournament, otherwise known as a triple crown (singles, doubles & mixed doubles).

Ben Johns


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  • DoB: March 18, 1999
  • Turned pro: 2016
  • Playing hand: Right

Who is the best pickleball player in the world? Many would argue it’s Ben Johns. While he ranks second in both the singles and doubles, he has held a #1 worldwide for longer than any other player and secured in excess of 80 wins on the PPA Tour.

This remarkable record is made all the more successful by his age. Born in March 1999, he has achieved more than most will in their career, and an argument can certainly be made that he has not yet even hit his prime.

One of his best achievements was his 108-match unbeaten run in singles back in 2019. At the time, he was just 20 years of age. Johns also holds more triple crowns than any other player, and was the first to win a triple crown at a major tournament — he made history at the Tournament of Champions in Utah. He’s also the most famous pickleball player right now.

Colin Johns


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  • DoB: June 15, 1993
  • Turned pro: 2018
  • Playing hand: Right

Pickleball dominance must run in the family because Colin, Ben’s older brother, is a world-class pickleball player in his own right. He currently sits as the #1 pickleball player in doubles, according to WPR.

A key difference between him and his brother is that Colin has far more professional experience in racket sports. He was a talented tennis player and competed for 5 years professionally before pickleball, peaking at an ATP ranking of #939 in doubles.

He first dipped his toes into pickleball in 2018, and the next year he was competing at the US Open. Remarkably, he made the semis — a sign of what would come. Within the year, he was a top-10 player for singles and doubles.

Formerly, he served as a coach at the Baltimore Country Club, teaching pickleball, tennis, and table tennis. However, in 2022 he decided to move to Austin, Texas, to focus his efforts on professional pickleball.

Read More: Pickleball Court Dimension + How to Set Up Your Own Court


Women’s Doubles Rankings

Rank Player Points Country State
1 Anna Leigh Waters 12250 USA Florida
2 Andrea Koop 12175 USA Michigan
3 Anna Bright 10625 USA Florida
4 Catherine Parenteau 10263 USA Florida
4 Lucy Kovalova 9675 USA Kansas
6 Callie Smith 9675 USA Utah
7 Simone Jardim 9402 USA Florida
8 Leigh Waters 9280 USA Florida
9 Parris Todd 7823 USA Florida
10 Jorja Johnson 7400 USA Florida

Women’s Singles Rankings

Rank Player Points Country State
1 Anna Leigh Waters 14250 USA Florida
2 Salome Devidze 10025 USA Florida
3 Lea Jansen 8368 USA Florida
4 Anna Bright 8275 USA Florida
4 Catherine Parenteau 8133 USA Florida
6 Parris Todd 7042 USA Florida
7 Jorja Johnson 6256 USA Florida
8 Megan Fudge 3500 USA Florida
9 Callie Smith 3076 USA Utah
10 Irina Tereschenko 2841 USA California

The Best Pickleball Players (Female)


Anna Leigh Waters

  • DoB: January 26, 2007
  • Turned pro: 2019
  • Playing hand: Right

Where Ben Johns is considered the greatest male pickleball player, Anna Leigh Waters is the number one pickleball player in the world for women. This is not only because she ranks first both in singles and doubles which Johns does not, but also because she achieved her feats at a much younger age.

Anna Leigh Waters is the youngest player to compete professionally at only 12 years old. You might consider this a little pre-emptive — but you’d be wrong. She secured titles that very same year and also became the youngest pickleball champion as well.

She competes in the doubles with her mother, Leigh Waters, who is currently ranked 8th in doubles. Leigh Waters also serves as her manager and coach. Previously, Anna used to play soccer to a good standard. However, she has largely stopped this to focus on her pickleball career.

Andrea Koop


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  • DoB: October 6, 1988
  • Turned pro: 2018
  • Playing hand: Right

Andrea is much older than the players discussed thus far. She was born in 1988 and didn’t turn pro until the age of 30. She got her start in tennis and acquired the NCAA Women’s Team Championship back in 2011 while she was a part of the UCLA Bruins.

Her introduction to pickleball was largely by chance. After noticing a friend from her childhood tennis days was visiting, she reached out for a catch-up. However, the friend suggested they instead play pickleball, and as the saying goes, the rest is history. She would become a professional pickleball player less than a year later, having acquired most of the necessary skills already from tennis.

To date, she holds 17 gold medals from her pickleball career, 3 of which are US Open medals. It seems she focuses much of her efforts on doubles play rather than singles, as she ranks #2 in the former and #82 in the latter.

Beyond pickleball, Koop has a lot to be proud of. She is a lawyer and also founded and serves as the director for the Beer City Open Pickleball Championships.

Salome Devidze


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  • DoB: January 2, 1986
  • Turned pro: 2022
  • Playing hand: Right

Salome Devidze undoubtedly has more professional experience than the other top players we have covered. Born in Georgia, she began playing tennis at 4 years of age and competed as a professional for 18 years from 2002-2020. Her highest ranking was #250 for doubles and #254 for singles. Unfortunately, she was forced to retire due to recurring injuries.

Yet it isn’t all doom and gloom. After a few years off, Salome’s injuries healed, and her friends showed her pickleball which re-lit her competitive drive. After only becoming a pro pickleball player in 2022, she somehow managed to claw her way to a rank of #2 in the doubles in a year. Simply amazing!

Read More: The 5 Best Pickleball Sets You Can Purchase


Closing Thoughts

There’s no doubt the quality of pickleball is on the up. It’s only natural, given the influx of new players — with more people playing, the standard rises.

Right now, some of the top pickleball players include JW Johns and Ben Johns, but for us, it’s not the top men’s pickleball players we’ve got our eyes on, but rather one woman. And that’s Anna Leigh Waters. It’s tough to truly grasp what she has achieved at such an early age. What’s even scarier is that she is nowhere near her prime, so she will only get better if she stays fit and trains hard.

Freelance writer. Table tennis enthusiast. Lover of all things online. When I’m not working on my loop game I’m probably binge-watching some fantasy show.