All General Discussion concerning WTA and ATP
Didn't think I'd live to see the day the great Vee is only the 8th ranked American on the WTA, though she ranks 35 places above Sharapova. As for the Russians, Kasatkina at 42, is the highest ranked Russian, followed by Alexandrova. Everything fell apart for the Russians after Maria's drug bust. Interestingly, quite a few Russian players poo pooed Meldonium and supported Maria in this regard which just makes me very suspicious of the lot.
U.S. Olympic women’s tennis qualifying already looks intense
Serena Williams is in strong early position to make the 2020 U.S. Olympic team. For everyone else, including older sister Venus Williams, every set of ranking points could be crucial over the next 10 months, including at the upcoming U.S. Open.
The U.S. has seven women in the world top 36 — not including 52nd-ranked Venus — but only four singles players can go to an Olympics from any one country come the rankings cutoff next June.
Serena Williams leads the way for Americans in second place overall in Olympic qualifying — which counts WTA rankings points starting after the 2019 French Open and running through the 2020 French Open. She has 1,885 points despite playing just two events the last two months, taking runner-up at Wimbledon and the Canadian Open.
Only Wimbledon champion Simona Halep, who has already been named Romania’s Opening Ceremony flag bearer, has more Olympic qualifying points (2,395).
After Serena, three more U.S. women are in the top 10 in Olympic qualifying — Sonya Kenin (No. 5), Madison Keys (No. and Alison Riske (No. 10).
Keys, a quarterfinalist or better at all four Grand Slams in her career, jumped from outside the top 20 among Americans to the No. 3 American by notching her biggest title in Ohio last week.
Notables who must improve their ranking start with Venus Williams, who moved from 18th on the U.S. list to eighth by reaching the Cincinnati quarterfinals. She turns 40 before the Tokyo Games and could become the oldest Olympic singles player since the sport returned to the Olympic program following a 64-year break in 1988. She already owns the modern-era record of five Olympic tennis medals from her five previous Games and could still get to the Olympics in doubles if she doesn’t qualify in singles.
Sloane Stephens, the 2017 U.S. Open champion, is 12th in U.S. Olympic qualifying, winning a total of three matches among four tournaments in the window.
The veterans Williams sisters, Keys and Stephens, who made up the 2016 U.S. Olympic singles team, must fend off an emerging class.
Kenin, 20, backed up her French Open upset of Serena Williams by winning a lower-level event in June and then beating the world Nos. 1 and 2 the last two weeks.
Riske is playing some of the best tennis of her career at age 29. She beat world then-No. 1 Ash Barty to make her first Slam quarterfinal at Wimbledon, a week before her wedding.
Then there are two of the phenoms of the year. Coco Gauff, 15, is ninth in U.S. Olympic qualifying after a run to the Wimbledon fourth round. Gauff was granted a wild card into the U.S. Open, after which she can’t play in more than five senior tournaments (and possibly no more than three) until her 16th birthday in March due to WTA age restrictions to keep young teens from burnout.
Amanda Anisimova, 17, is 13th in U.S. Olympic qualifying. Her best results this year — French Open semifinal, Australian Open fourth round — came before the Olympic qualifying window.
It’s looking like the toughest U.S. Olympic women’s singles team to make outright since 2004. Back then, the U.S. had Nos. 4 (Lindsay Davenport), 7 (Jennifer Capriati), 8 (Venus Williams), 11 (Serena Williams) and 18 (Chanda Rubin). Davenport, Capriati and Serena didn’t play at the Athens Games, opening the door for Lisa Raymond to play singles and doubles in Athens.
In 2000, Serena Williams didn’t make the Olympic singles field despite being ranked eighth in the world. A max of three players per nation were taken to Sydney, and the U.S. had Nos. 2, 3 and 6 in Davenport, Venus Williams and Monica Seles.
An Olympic rule mandating a minimum of Fed Cup appearances could affect Tokyo 2020 eligibility. However, the fine print allows for that to be bypassed in discretionary exceptional circumstances.
U.S. Olympic Women’s Singles Qualifying Standings (Max. 4 can qualify)
1. Serena Williams — 1,885 points
2. Sonya Kenin — 1,081
3. Madison Keys — 972
4. Alison Riske — 802
5. Jennifer Brady — 356
6. Jessica Pegula — 348
7. Madison Brengle — 344
8. Venus Williams — 302
9. Coco Cauff — 298
10. Bernarda Pera — 280
11. Lauren Davis — 245
12. Sloane Stephens — 238
13. Amanda Anisimova — 230
Olympics ain’t WTA... It is six matches in seven days... no rest, a lot op pressure on bodies ( like knees, backs, elbows,...) I hope the USA sends Venus and Serena as they are more likely to have such issue in comparison to Gauff or Anisimova, so more chance for Belgium to grab a medal
When it come to Olympics, I am only rooting for Belgian players....
"Never argue with an idiot - they take you down to their level and then beat you on experience"
"Don't wrestle with a pig: you both get dirty, but the pig actually likes it"
What do you think of Goffin's eyes? Wicked, no? What do Belgians say about them? He has the strongest eyes and gazes ever.
Barty reclaims No. 1 spot, Andreescu up to fifth
Australia's Ashleigh Barty has reclaimed her world No. 1 status in the WTA rankings less than a month after losing it, while US Open champion Bianca Andreescu moved up to a career-high fifth after her maiden Grand Slam win in New York.
Andreescu beat Serena Williams 6-3, 7-5 in Saturday's final to maintain a 13-match unbeaten run -- in which she also won the Canadian Open -- to break into the top 10 for the first time in her career.
"I don't want to take anything for granted," Andreescu said. "These are the moments you live for and I'm just beyond blessed."
After taking the first set and leading 5-1 in the second, Andreescu was broken twice by 23-time Slam winner Williams before eventually breaking back and winning the contest. In doing so, she become the first Canadian to win a major in the professional era.
"It definitely wasn't easy in the final against Serena Williams," the 19-year-old said. "I think I'm most proud of how I'm able to get into my zone and I was able to block out the crowd, too, because they were really, really loud.
"If I didn't do that, I'm sure Serena would have won that second set, so I'm really glad with how I handled everything."
French Open champion Barty exited the tournament in the last 16 but regained the No. 1 spot after last year's champion Naomi Osaka was also knocked out at the same stage.
The Japanese, who also beat Williams in last year's final, slipped to fourth in the rankings, with Czech Republic's Karolina Pliskova and Ukraine's Elina Svitolina leapfrogging her to move up to second and third respectively.
Wimbledon champion Simona Halep fell two places down to sixth, while Williams fell one spot to ninth despite her run to the final.
In the ATP rankings, there was no change in the top three with Novak Djokovic leading men's champion Rafael Nadal -- who won his 19th Slam Sunday -- and Roger Federer, but this year's runner-up Daniil Medvedev moved up to a career-high fourth.
Medvedev has had a stellar record since a third-round exit at Wimbledon, reaching the finals of his last four tournaments and winning the Cincinnati Masters last month.
Her ranking may not have actually moved up, but No. 2 Karolina Pliskova took a giant step towards regaining No. 1 from Ashleigh Barty by winning the new event in Zhengzhou, China this past week.
Having trailed Barty for the top ranking by 376 points a week ago, 6,501 to 6,125, Pliskova’s triumph at the Premier event has taken her to within 86 points of the Australian—she has 6,415 points now.
Pliskova has more titles and match wins than anyone on the women’s tour this year. She won her fourth WTA title of the year in Zhengzhou, having previously won in Brisbane, Rome and Eastbourne, and she now has 49 match wins on the year, having gone into Zhengzhou tied with Barty at 45.