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Djokovic slips to third as Medvedev tops rankings

PARIS: Daniil Medvedev returned to the top of the ATP rankings on Monday, ahead of Alexander Zverev, with Novak Djokovic slipping out of the top two for the first time in nearly four years. The 26-year-old Russian, who was surprisingly beaten by Tim van Rijthoven in the final at ‘s-Hertogenbosch on Sunday, briefly occupied the number one spot for two weeks at the end of February and the beginning of March. But with Djokovic losing in the quarter-finals at the French Open, where he was defending champion, the door opened for Medvedev to rise again to top spot.

Medvedev is unable to compete at Wimbledon as Russian and Belarusian players have been barred following the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Rankings points, however, will not be awarded. Zverev climbs to number two for the first time having spent a total of 56 weeks since November 2017 at number three. The German, however, is facing a spell on the sidelines after tearing ligaments in his right ankle during his French Open semi-final with Nadal.

Djokovic’s grip on the number one ranking had already been weakened by his exclusion earlier in the year, because of COVID regulations, from the Australian Open where he was also the defending champion. It is the first time since October 2018 that Djokovic is not in the top two. Rafael Nadal, who beat the Serb at Roland Garros and went on to take the title for the 14th time, stays at number four, now only 245 points behind his great rival.

Casper Ruud, who was overwhelmed by Nadal in the Paris final, reached his best career ranking of fifth in the world, up one place ahead of Stefanos Tsitsipas. Former world number one Andy Murray climbed 21 places to 48 following his journey to the final in Stuttgart at the weekend while Medvedev’s conqueror Van Rijthoven jumped 99 places from 205 to 106. ATP rankings as of June 13, 2022 (players representing Russia and Belarus are banned from competing under the name or flag of Russia or Belarus until further notice).

Swiatek dominates

In another development, French Open champion Iga Swiatek remains firmly at the head of the new WTA rankings released on Monday, over 4000 points ahead of number two Anett Kontaveit. The 21-year-old Pole has held the top spot since the surprise retirement of Australian Ashleigh Barty at the end of March.

The only change in the Top 20 sees Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka, beaten in Sunday’s final at ‘s-Hertogenbosch by the Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova, take fifth place from Maria Sakkari. Neither Sabalenka nor Alexandrova will be at Wimbledon, the third Grand Slam event of the year, as Russian and Belarusian players have been barred from competing following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. No WTA rankings points, however, will be awarded for the event. – AFP

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