Snakes and Ladders: DelPo sinks again
Originally published on: 16/08/10 10:04
Usually the case following a Masters 1000 tournament, there are ranking changes left, right and centre (or should that be up, down and sideways?) after an entertaining week on the ATP Tour in Toronto.
Andy Murray wakes a happy man on Monday morning after consolidating his spot at No.4 and defending his Rogers Cup title – boosting the Scot’s hopes of a kind draw ahead of his latest tilt at the US Open at the end of this month.
“Winning a tournament is always great, but it’s the first time I beat Roger and Rafa in the same tournament, which is probably the most pleasing thing, and then didn’t drop a set against either of them,” said the Scot. “It’s good for the confidence for the next few weeks.”
Defeated Toronto finalist Roger Federer’s short stint at No.3 comes to an end after his three-set semi-final victory over Novak Djokovic ensured a slightly more natural order at the top of the pile. And Federer professed to feeling in good nick despite his 7-5 7-5 loss to Murray: “Honestly I’m feeling actually pretty good, considering,” said the Swiss. “That’s definitely a good sign for what’s to come.”
The only other top 10 change sees Juan Martin del Potro continue his slide down the ladder – losing his place at No.8 to Fernando Verdasco after failing to defend the points he earned for making the final in Montreal last year.
Also dwindling this week is the American dream. After dropping out of the top 10, Andy Roddick slips another two places to No.13, his lowest ranking since October 2002. The 27-year-old revealed last week that his recent on court struggles were due to a mild case of glandular fever, but the Texan will have the opportunity to put points back on the board in Cincinnati. Twice a champion at the Ohio tournament (in 2003 and 2006), Roddick can rack up a host of points with a solid run in Cincinnati, having lost his opener to US Open Series champ Sam Querrey last year.
Continuing to fight back from injuries and a lowly ranking after slipping as low as No.161 in March this year, David Nalbandian continued his recent run of form with a title-winning display in Washington DC and another positive run to the quarters in Toronto. Jumping 92 places after victory at the Legg Mason Classic, the 28-year-old Argentine climbed another eight spots to return to the top 40 for the first time since October 2009.
Jeremy Chardy repeated his only career-top 10 scalp in Canada, defeating Fernando Verdasco in three sets before doubling up for a straight-sets win over world No.6 Nikolay Davydenko. The 23-year-old Frenchman, who hadn’t beaten a top 10 player since his 2008 Roland Garros win over David Nalbandian, rises 14 places to No.48 by virtue of his run to a career-first quarter-final at an ATP Masters 1000 tournament.
In the team competition, doubles duo Bob and Mike Bryan reclaimed their world No.1 individual doubles ranking in Toronto after defeating French pairing Julien Benneteau and Michael Llodra 6-3 7-5.
“We were lucky today. We played the best match of the year,” said Mike Bryan, after he and brother Bob scored their seventh title in as many final appearances in 2010.
Kim Clijsters returns to No.4 in the world for the first time since 2006 after defeating Maria Sharapova for the Cincinnati title. The Belgian made her tour return at the Ohio tournament as a wildcard last year, but took a step closer to returning to the top of the rankings after beating her fellow former world No.1 2-6 7-6(4) 6-2.
Though forced to retire from her semi-final with the eventual champion, Ana Ivanovic was the WTA Tour’s biggest mover, leaping back into the top 50 by virtue of her semi-final run, climbing 23 places from No.62 to No.39.