Federer up to ATP No. 3 after Wimbledon; Muguruza WTA No. 5
ABS-CBN Sports on Jul 18, 2017 08:12 AM
Switzerland's Roger Federer celebrates after defeating Croatia's Marin Cilic to win the Men's Singles final match on day thirteen at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Sunday, July 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)
By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press
LONDON (AP) — Roger Federer's eighth Wimbledon title pushed him back up to No. 3 in the ATP rankings on Monday after he ended last season at No. 16.
And, because he sat out the last half of 2016, his points will only continue to accumulate, making a return to No. 1 a real possibility.
"I'm playing for titles at this stage of my career. Rankings, not so much, unless I'm as close as I am right now," said the 35-year-old Federer, who also clinched a berth in the season-ending ATP Finals, held in London on Nov. 12-19. So I just have to check the situation, if it's worth it to run after it or not."
Garbine Muguruza's first championship at the All England Club returned her to the WTA's top 10 at No. 5, a rise of 10 spots, while runner-up Venus Williams goes from No. 11 to No. 9.
Karolina Pliskova became the 23rd woman to be ranked No. 1, a debut for her that was guaranteed last week, based on results at Wimbledon. She had been No. 3, and swaps positions with former No. 1 Angelique Kerber.
Serena Williams has not competed since January because she is pregnant. By losing rankings points she earned last year, including a title at Wimbledon and runner-up finish at the French Open, she went from No. 4 to No. 15 on Monday — leaving her out of the top 10 for the first time since April 1, 2012.
The rankings count points from the preceding 52 weeks, which is why Pliskova is able to take over at No. 1 despite losing in the second round at the All England Club.
Pliskova, a 25-year-old from the Czech Republic, has never won a Grand Slam title — she's not the first player to top the rankings without that achievement on her resume — although she was the runner-up to Kerber at last year's U.S. Open and a semifinalist at Roland Garros last month.
Kerber lost in the first round at the French Open, then the fourth round of Wimbledon.
Simona Halep had a chance to be No. 1 this week but lost to Johanna Konta in the Wimbledon quarterfinals. So Halep continues at No. 2, with Konta going from No. 7 to No. 4.
Federer's placement is his highest since he was No. 3 in August 2016, at the start of his half-year hiatus from the tour.
He has spent a total of 302 weeks as the ATP's No. 1 player in his career, a record.
One of Federer's coaches, Severin Luthi, was asked about aiming to return to the top spot.
"If it comes, for sure, it's amazing," Luthi said. "But for him, (winning majors is) more important."
Andy Murray held onto No. 1 despite losing in the quarterfinals of his title defense at the All England Club, ahead of No. 2 Rafael Nadal, who lost in the fourth round of Wimbledon after winning the French Open.
Novak Djokovic remained at No. 4, while Stan Wawrinka dropped two spots to No. 5 after a first-round exit.
Wimbledon runner-up Marin Cilic stayed at No. 6.