Nadal up to No. 2; Djokovic slides to No. 4, worst since ’09

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PARIS (AP) French Open champion Rafael Nadal moved up two spots to No. 2 in the ATP rankings on Monday, his highest placing since October 2014.

Novak Djokovic, meanwhile, slid from No. 2 to No. 4 in the new rankings, his lowest status in 7+ years. He lost in the quarterfinals at Roland Garros, where he won the title a year ago to complete a career Grand Slam. That was also his fourth consecutive major championship, but he failed to defend any of those titles.

Andy Murray retained his No. 1 ranking after a semifinal exit in Paris, while Stan Wawrinka stayed at No. 3 after losing to Nadal 6-2, 6-3, 6-1 in Sunday’s final.

Roger Federer is still No. 5 after missing the French Open for the second year in a row.

Nadal’s victory in Paris gave him a record 10th trophy at the clay-court tournament and ended his three-year drought without a Grand Slam title. He now has 15 major titles, breaking a tie with Pete Sampras for second place among men on the all-time list behind Federer’s 18.

Nadal was asked Sunday whether getting back to No. 1 in the rankings is important to him. He has spent a total of 141 weeks there, most recently in July 2014.

“I am playing well. I am in a good position. I just won the most important event of the year for me, so that’s the only thing that matters today, no?” he said. “Winning these kind of titles, then you have chances to become any number (in) the ranking.”

By winning the women’s championship at the French Open on Saturday for the first tour-level title of her career, Jelena Ostapenko jumped from 47th to a career-high 12th in the WTA rankings. The Latvian, who turned 20 during the tournament, lost in the first round a year ago at Roland Garros.

French Open runner-up Simona Halep moved from No. 4 to No. 2.

Angelique Kerber kept the No. 1 spot, despite being beaten in the first round in Paris. She is the first woman seeded No. 1 to lose in the French Open’s first round in the professional era, which began in 1968.

Serena Williams dropped two spots to No. 4. She is taking the rest of this year off because she is pregnant.

Elina Svitolina, a quarterfinalist at the French Open, rose one spot to a career-high No. 5.

Federer survives scare to advance in Halle

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HALLE, Germany (AP) Defending champion Roger Federer survived two match points against Benoit Paire to reach the quarterfinals of the Gerry Weber Open with a 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7) win on Thursday.

Paire rallied after losing the first set to take the second, and the Frenchman defended two match points at 6-5 in the decider to force a tiebreaker. Eight minutes later, it was a match point for the 48th-ranked Paire, and again when a mistake from Federer left it 7-6 in Paire’s favor.

But the top-ranked Swiss took the next three points to close the match in just under two hours at the grass-court tournament.

Federer extended his grass-court winning streak to 18 matches, including his titles in Stuttgart last week and at Halle and Wimbledon last year.

Federer skipped the entire clay-court season for the second year in a row and is now just four wins away from matching Jimmy Connors’ all-time record of 174 victories on grass.

Federer next faces Matthew Ebden of Australia, who upset former champion Philipp Kohlschreiber 4-6, 6-1, 6-2.

Also Thursday, Borna Coric defeated Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-4, 6-2.

The Croat next faces either Florian Mayer or Andreas Seppi.

Magdalena shows form on grass in Birmingham

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BIRMINGHAM, England — Magdalena Rybarikova, who climbed almost 90 places last year to reach a career-high No. 17 in March, showed she might rise even further after rallying against Kristina Mladenovic 3-6, 6-2, 6-1 Wednesday to advance to the quarterfinals in Birmingham.

The Slovak accelerated toward victory against the former top 10 player from France with an array of slice ground strokes, clever approaches and sharp volleys. The range of shots worked excellently on the lush surface at the grass-court Nature Valley Classic and helped her take control midway through the second set.

Rybarikova last year reached the Wimbledon semifinals. She is a former champion here, winning the title in 2009.

In the first round she beat third-seeded Karolina Pliskova for the loss of only five games but found it tougher against Mladenovic.

“I started to play very well,” Rybarikova said of her improvement from the fourth game of the second set against Mladenovic. “She served great to begin with and I struggled with my returns, but I kept fighting and my game improved a lot.

“I think I’d been a bit passive. The key was when I played more cross-court slices and drops and made an early break in the second set.

“That’s the way I am trying to play on grass. I am thankful that I have the game to do that. This court here really suits my game.”

At the changeover in the fifth game of the second set, Mladenovic’s morale appeared to plunge, and afterward her error ratio rose sharply with her standard dropping significantly.

The third set of a match which lasted nearly two hours took only 22 minutes, and long before the end the outcome had ceased to be in doubt.

Rybarikova next faces Slovenian qualifier Dalila Jakupovic, who on Tuesday overcame a difference in rankings of almost 100 places and saved four match points while beating seventh-seeded Elise Mertens of Belgium.

Jakupovic followed up Wednesday by getting past 18th-ranked Naomi Osaka of Japan, who recently beat four former top-ranked opponents. Osaka was forced to retired injured after losing the first set 6-3.