Will US Open determine 2012 World Number One?
Roger Federer applauds his performance and the fans at Wimbledon (Image: AP)
Roger Federer’s elevation back to world number one, on the back of his seventh Wimbledon crown this week, is just one of the many shake ups that recent results have caused to the ATP tour rankings.
There is the potential for the top spot to change once, maybe twice, before the US Open as the top three players Federer, Djokovic and Nadal have entered the Masters 1000 series events in Toronto and Cincinnati in the lead up to the Open at Flushing Meadow. Of course, all three will be back at Wimbledon in two weeks for the Olympics, but that does not carry ATP ranking points.
Federer has a narrow lead of fifteen points over Djokovic, who lost points as defending champion at Wimbledon and not making the final again, but Nadal has lost more as a result of his third round exit.
Since there are a 1000 points up for grabs in both of the Masters series events, a win by either Federer or Djokovic, or even going one round further than their rival, will give them the number one spot.
Djokovic is the defending champion in Canada so pressure will be on again to at least make the final, or he will lose ground to Federer should the Swiss make the semis. Nadal will have to win both events, and have the other two lose in the first or second round. to threaten for top spot.
Wimbledon runner up, Andy Murray is too many points behind on 7,460 to move up to number two but solid results of semis or better could see him overtake Nadal at number three.
It won’t be a surprise if both Federer and Murray do not perform that well at the Olympics as both may suffer emotional hangovers for their Wimbledon efforts. Nadal will be the freshest of the four and could easily defend his gold medal.
One of the biggest post Wimbledon ranking plunges was Australian Bernard Tomic’s dive of seventeen places to 45 as a result of his first round exit. Having made the 2011 quarter finals he had considerable points to defend, and failed to do so.
On the women’s side, all the post Wimbledon talk has been on the return of Serena, charging back to number four, but few people noticed that Maria Sharapova’s time at the top was short lived being replaced by Azarenka for her second stint this year at number one. Being the 2011 finalist, Sharapova had a bunch of points to defend which was not helped by her forth round loss to Lisicki.
Tennis fans would be quite used to the revolving door at the top of the women’s game as the men’s has been a lot less turbulent in recent years. For example, Caroline Wozniacki, who was number one at the start of 2012, now finds herself slumping to number seven.
With three of the grand slams done and dusted, a second title for the year by any of the women could decide the year end number one and ditto the men’s as well. Roger Federer is in the best position to take the 2012 year end crown as his two main challengers have finals points to defend in New York.
It augers well for a fascinating US Open, August 27- September 9.
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