With two Grand Slam finals and three titles last season, Casper Ruud is eager to make the big step toward the ATP No. 1 ranking.

The third-ranked Norwegian who stands behind the Spanish pair of Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal in the table, will be using the ATP-WTA United Cup group stage in Brisbane as a launching pad for his fresh hopes.

The 24-year-old who celebrated his birthday three days before Christmas, had a close call with the top honours during his US Open final against Alcaraz, three months after losing to Nadal in the Roland Garros final..

The Spanish teenager won that match and with it the spot at the ranking summit.

Ruud is now looking to the Australian Open from January 16 for another bite of the cherry.

“Last season showed me that I have the potential if I continue to do the right things, work hard, I can be in that position again, or it can never happen – you never know in this sport,” he said.

“If there is maybe one time that it could happen again, it’s actually in the near future (the Open).

“If I have a good (Australia) trip I can be in a position (to become No. 1 again.”

Ruud will lead the Norwegian team, which faces an opening tie against Brazil in the new 18-national event which concludes with the knockout stage next weekend in Sydney.