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Federer out of top 10; Jabeur makes history; Murray down to 172 – the big movers in the rankings
Roger Federer falls out of the top 10 on Monday for the first time since January 2017 while there were also big moves for Murray, Jabeur, Swiatek and Indian Wells champions Badosa and Norrie
The move by the ATP and WTA Tours to begin the process of getting back to their 52-week systems began in Indian Wells, with many players seeing big points drop off the computer, resulting in some notable moves down (and up) the rankings. Here is a recap of some of the movers and shakers in this week’s rankings.
Federer out of top 10 for first time since 2017
None bigger, indeed, at least in terms of name and reputation than Roger Federer, who drops out of the top 10 to No 11. Federer has been helped by the extension of the rankings to, effectively, a two-year system because of the Coronavirus to this point. But Hubert Hurkacz’s run in Indian Wells means the Pole moves into the top 10 in his place.
This week marks the first time that Federer, who had a third knee operation earlier this summer and missed most of 2020 thanks to the first two, has been out of the top 10 since January 2017, when he returned from six months out following a different knee injury, and went on to win the Australian Open.
Jabeur the first Arab player in top 10
Ons Jabeur’s brilliant run to the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells pushed her into the world’s top 10 for the first time and the Tunisian is the first Arab player, man or woman, to ever be ranked inside the world’s top 10. The 27-year-old climbs six spots to No. 8.
Jabeur is not done yet, either. She could yet qualify for the season-ending WTA Finals and climb higher, and has stated she wants to win a Grand Slam and inspire more Arab youngsters to play the game.
Andy Murray slides to No 172
Andy Murray has been playing some pretty good tennis lately and who knows, if he stays healthy, he could yet make a big push back up the rankings as he continues to defy predictions of what is possible in elite sport when you have a metal hip.
But the former world No 1 falls to No 172 in the new rankings, a far cry from his glory days when he won three Grand Slam titles, helped Britain win the Davis Cup and became the world No 1 in 2016. The fall, which comes after the points from his 2019 Antwerp title dropped off, will have serious ramifications, too; if the 34-year-old can’t pick up enough points to get back in the top 100 this year, he’ll need a wildcard into the Australian Open in January, or have to come through the qualifying event.
Norrie breaks top 20 for the first time
At the start of 2021, Cameron Norrie was considered to be a player well capable of breaking into the world’s top 50, maybe top 30 at a push. 10 months on and the British left-hander is a top-20 player and good enough to win a Masters 1000 event, having stormed through the draw in Indian Wells.
The Brit is up to No 15 in the rankings and No 10 in the race to Turin (with 8th placed Rafael Nadal out for the rest of the season).
Norrie has improved his serve and his forehand in 2021 and his attitude and fitness are second to none. If he keeps up this rate of improvement, a place in the top 10 – and also the ATP Finals in Turin – could become a reality by the year-end.
Meanwhile, Indian Wells runner-up Nikoloz Basilashvili returns to the top 30, climbing nine spots to No 27 in the rankings. The Georgian has been as high as No 16 in 2019. Indian Wells semi-finalist Taylor Fritz also climbs nine spots to No 30.
Badosa makes Top 15 debut
Ranked No 87 in the world last September 23-year-old Paula Badosa has been steadily iproving after her disatstrous start to the season Down Under. Her title at Indian Wells put her up to a new career-high of No 13 in the rankings, and No. 8 in the Race to the WTA Finals (with four berths still up for grabs).
Indian Wells runner-up Victoria Azarenka climbs six spots to No 26.
Swiatek slips out of top 10
The 2020 French Open champion Iga Swiatek dropped seven places to fall out of the top 10 (to 11th) after a relatively early exit in Indian Wells. The Pole is a class act, though, and it probably won’t be too long before she’s moving back up the rankings again.