Sabalenka and Djokovic are No. 1 in the rankings; Coco Gauff is No. 3 in singles, No. 1 in doubles


New York—US Open women’s runner-up Aryna Sabalenka and men’s champion Novak Djokovic each moved up one spot to No. 1 in the rankings on Monday — Sabalenka’s first week atop the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), and Djokovic’s record-extending 390th atop the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) — while women’s champion Coco Gauff rose to a career-high No. 3 in singles and No. 1 in doubles.

Sabalenka, a 25-year-old from Belarus, is the 29th player to top the women’s list since computerized rankings began in the 1970s.

Her run in New York, which ended with a 2-6, 6-3, 6-2 loss to Gauff in Saturday’s final, allowed Sabalenka to move up one spot and overtake Iga Swiatek, who slid to No. 2 after holding No. 1 since April 2022. Swiatek won the trophy at year ago but lost in the fourth round this time.

“All year, I’ve been playing well,” said Sabalenka, who won her first major title at the Australian Open and reached the semifinals at the French Open and Wimbledon. “I put her, kind of like, under pressure.”

Gauff, a 19-year-old from Florida, is next in singles, rising three spots from No. 6, and she and partner Jessica Pegula jointly went up to No. 1 in doubles after making it to the quarterfinals in that event. They had been together at No. 6 behind No. 1 Katerina Siniakova before the US Open, but Siniakova and Barbora Krejcikova lost in the second round a year after taking the championship.

This is the first time since August 2003 that the players occupying the WTA’s top rankings in singles and doubles switched on the same day.

Djokovic’s 6-3, 7-6 (5), 6-3 victory over Daniil Medvedev on Sunday gave the 36-year-old from Serbia his 24th Grand Slam singles title, matching Margaret Court on the all-time list and giving him sole possession of the record for the professional era, one ahead of Serena Williams.

Djokovic — who already owned the mark for most time at No. 1 in tennis by a man or woman — entered the US Open at No. 2 behind Carlos Alcaraz, who was the 2022 champion at Flushing Meadows but lost to No. 3 Medvedev in the semifinals.

This is the seventh switch between Djokovic and Alcaraz in 2023. The last time there were more changes to the ATP’s No. 1 in a single season was 1999, when there were eight.

Holger Rune remained at No. 4 on Monday, followed by Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev, who each moved up two places. Casper Ruud, last year’s runner-up to Alcaraz in New York, dropped from No. 5 to No. 9 after exiting in the second round.

Ben Shelton, a 20-year-old American, soared into the top 20 for the first time, climbing from No. 47 to No. 19 with his first semifinal appearance at a major tournament. He was eliminated by Djokovic.

Shelton joins Taylor Fritz at No. 8, Frances Tiafoe at No. 11 and Tommy Paul at No. 13 to give the United States four men in the ATP’s top 20, something that last happened in January 2011, when the quartet was Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish, Sam Querrey and John Isner.

Elena Rybakina stayed at No. 4 in the WTA rankings, followed by Pegula, and Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrousova went from No. 9 to a career-best No. 6 after reaching the US Open quarterfinals. She was defeated at that stage by Madison Keys, whose semifinal run pushed her up six spots to No. 11.

Ons Jabeur, a three-time major finalist including at last year’s US Open, bowed out in the fourth round this time and went from No. 7 to No. 9.

Image credits: AP

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