Djokovic ties Federer in weeks at No. 1; Gauff up to No. 38

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Novak Djokovic is gaining on Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the Grand Slam standings, and he’s already caught Federer in another significant statistic: As of Monday, Djokovic has been No. 1 in the ATP rankings for a total of 310 weeks.

That equals Federer’s career record for most time spent atop the rankings. And no matter what happens over the next week, Djokovic is assured of breaking Federer’s mark on March 8.

Pete Sampras is third on the list, with 286 weeks.

Djokovic’s Australian Open championship last month gave the 33-year-old from Serbia 18 Grand Slam singles trophies. Only Federer and Nadal, each with 20, have more.

Getting to that milestone for No. 1 weeks is “going to be a relief for me, because I’m going to focus all my attention on Slams, mostly,” Djokovic said after beating Daniil Medvedev in the final at Melbourne Park. “When you are going for No. 1 rankings, you kind of have to be playing the entire season, and you have to be playing well; you have to play all the tournaments. My goals will adapt and will shift a little bit.”

There was no movement in the ATP’s Top 10 on Monday.

But if current No. 3 Medvedev reaches the final at the hard-court tournament in Rotterdam, Netherlands, that concludes Sunday, he would overtake Nadal and move up to a career-high No. 2.

That would make Medvedev the first man other than Federer, Nadal, Djokovic or Andy Murray to be first or second since International Tennis Hall of Fame electee Lleyton Hewitt was No. 2 behind Federer in July 2005.

Two big jumps this week came from tournament champions. Alexei Popyrin, a 21-year-old from Australia, rose 32 places to 82nd by winning the trophy in Singapore, and Juan Manuel Cerundolo, a 19-year-old from Argentina, went up 154 spots to 181st by collecting the Cordona Open title. It was Cerundolo’s debut in a tour-level event.

Reigning French Open champion Iga Swiatek added a second career tour-level title at the Adelaide International, which allowed her to move up three spots to a career-high No. 15 in the WTA rankings.

There were no changes above her. Ash Barty is still No. 1, followed by Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka, Simona Halep, Sofia Kenin and Elina Svitolina.

American teenager Coco Gauff, who turns 17 on March 13, rose from No. 52 to a career-best No. 38 by making it to the semifinals in Adelaide after going through qualifying.

With Shelby Rogers going from No. 53 to No. 49 by reaching the quarterfinals in Adelaide, she and Gauff give the United States 11 women in the Top 50 for the first time since 2003.

Top-ranked Swiatek, Kvitova reach quarters at Agel Open

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OSTRAVA, Czech Republic – Top-ranked Iga Swiatek advanced to the quarterfinals of the Agel Open after Ajla Tomljanovic retired with an injury during the second set of their second-round match on Wednesday.

The Polish U.S. Open champion was leading 7-5, 2-2 when her Australian opponent retired due to a left knee injury at the indoor hardcourt event in the eastern Czech city of Ostrava.

Swiatek, who also won the French Open in June, will next face American qualifier Catherine McNally or Karolina Muchova.

Home favorite and two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova upset second-seeded Paula Badosa of Spain 7-6 (4), 6-4 to set up a quarterfinal against this year’s Wimbledon winner Elena Rybakina, who rallied to eliminate Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-7 (5), 6-4, 7-5.

Czech players also won the last two first-round matches on the schedule.

Muchova knocked out seventh-seeded Beatriz Haddad Maia of Brazil 6-4, 6-4 and Barbora Krejcikova ousted American Shelby Rogers 6-2, 6-2 for her sixth straight victory after she won the Tallinn Open on Sunday for her first WTA title of the year.

Djokovic near flawless to reach second round in Astana

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ASTANA, Kazakhstan – Novak Djokovic delivered a near-flawless performance to ease into the second round of the Astana Open with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Cristian Garin on Wednesday as he goes for a third straight tournament title.

Djokovic dropped just six points on his serve and won the last five games to seal the win in just 62 minutes.

Djokovic is coming off a victory in Tel Aviv last week and – aside from a match at the Laver Cup – the Wimbledon champion hasn’t lost since the French Open quarterfinals.

“From the start to the end, (it was) a great performance,” Djokovic said. “Playing in a new tournament, different conditions, the first match is never easy. Obviously you are looking to see how you are going to adapt, but I did it perfectly, really, played as well as I can.”

Djokovic will next play Botic van de Zandschulp.

Top-ranked Carlos Alcaraz lost in the opening round on Tuesday in his first match since winning the U.S. Open title to capture the No. 1 spot.

Stefanos Tsitsipas reached the quarterfinals by beating 19-year-old Luca Nardi of Italy 7-6 (2), 7-6 (3). Nardi was playing just his fifth tour-level main-draw match and impressed the third-seeded Greek, who didn’t earn a single break point.

“He’s a player that can play very well in the future,” Tsitsipas said. “There weren’t any holes. I believe today he was able to sustain that level from the beginning to end, and that was extremely impressive.”

Roberto Bautista Agut also reached the quarterfinals as he followed up his first-round upset of Felix Auger-Aliassime by beating Pavel Kotov 6-1, 7-6 (5).

Marin Cilic, who lost the Tel Aviv final to Djokovic, had to come from behind to beat Oscar Otte 5-7, 7-6 (4), 6-2 in the first round to set up a round-of-16 match against Karen Khachanov.