Paris: Russia’s Daniil Medvedev has pushed Spain’s Rafael Nadal to No. 3 in ATP rankings, putting the tennis great in danger of not getting a top-2 seeding at the French Open, which is barely three weeks away.
If the Russian — who spent 10 days in bed recovering from Covid-19 before the Madrid Open — holds on to the No. 2 ranking until the seedings are made in two weeks’ time, Nadal would be the No. 3 seed in Paris and potentially on the same half of the draw as No. 1 Novak Djokovic, according to tennis.com.
However, Nadal has a good chance of wresting back the No. 2 position from Medvedev in the coming two weeks as another Masters 1000 tournament — the Italian Open — has kicked off in Rome, where the Spaniard is a nine-time champion and slated to play.
Besides, Nadal can even enter an ATP 250s tournament in either Geneva or Lyon next week.
It was a forgettable past week for both Medvedev and Nadal. They lost before the semi-final stage of the Madrid Open.
While the Russian lost in the third round to Cristian Garin, Nadal was beaten in the quarter-finals by the eventual winner, Germany’s Alexander Zverev.
Big leap for Belarusian Sabalenka
Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka rose from her previous career-high of No. 7 to No. 4 in the WTA rankings after winning the fourth WTA 1000 title of her career in Madrid, adding to previous triumphs at Wuhan (2018 and 2019) and Doha (2020).
“That’s unbelievable. That’s crazy. I’m really happy with this improvement,” the Belarusian said when told of her new career-high ranking.
“There are still a lot of things to improve, too. Yeah, of course, I’m really happy, but I’m also not really focusing on the ranking. I’m more focusing on my game.
“No. 4, this is not No. 1. There are still a lot of things to work on and to improve,” Sabalenka told tennis.com.
Sabalenka is now the second-highest ranked Belarusian player in WTA rankings history, passing Natasha Zvereva, who got to a career-high of No. 5. Victoria Azarenka is the highest, getting to No. 1.
And a bit further down on the WTA rankings, Paula Badosa made her Top- 50 debut, jumping from No. 62 to No. 42 after reaching her biggest semi-final to date in Madrid.
The wild card entrant was the first Spanish woman to make the final four at the WTA 1000 event since it debuted on the calendar in 2009.