Novak Djokovic starts 335th week as World No. 1, Alexander Zverev pushes Rafael Nadal out of top 4, Ashleigh Barty extends lead on WTA list

Novak Djokovic at the Tokyo Olympic Games
Novak Djokovic at the Tokyo Olympic Games

Novak Djokovic and Ashleigh Barty continue to lead the men's and women's world rankings respectively, while Alexander Zverev's recent Cincinnati win has helped him displace Rafael Nadal from the No. 4 spot. The ATP and WTA tours published their latest world rankings on Monday, with a few significant changes in both lists.

Djokovic won the first three Majors of the season, which is why he is comfortably ahead of the pack despite being out of action since his underwhelming Tokyo Olympics campaign. The Serb began his record-extending 335th week as World No. 1 on Monday, and is now only 43 weeks away from breaking the all-time record of 377 weeks which is currently held by Steffi Graf.

Even though he sat out of the Canada and Toronto Masters, Novak Djokovic will head to the US Open as the firm favorite. The 34-year-old is hoping to become the first male player since Rod Laver to win all four Majors in the same year.

Djokovic and Medvedev at the 2021 Australian Open
Djokovic and Medvedev at the 2021 Australian Open

Djokovic is followed by Daniil Medvedev at No. 2 and Stefanos Tsitsipas at No. 3 - both of whom were defeated in the semifinals of this week's Cincinnati Masters.

Cincinnati champion Alexander Zverev, who also won the Olympic gold medal and is currently on a 11-match winning streak, has climbed one spot to No. 4. Zverev is now just one rung below his career-best ranking of No. 3.

The previous No. 4, Rafael Nadal, has been pushed to the No. 5 spot - his lowest ranking since May 2017. Nadal is currently away from the tour and will skip the rest of the 2021 season due to his foot injury.

There is no change in the rest of the top 10, with Dominic Thiem (No. 6), Andrey Rublev (No. 7), Matteo Berrettini (No. 8), Roger Federer (No. 9) and Denis Shapovalov (No. 10) rounding out the top 10.

Felix Auger-Aliassime climbed two positions to a new career-high ranking of No. 15, while two former top 10 players - Grigor Dimitrov and Gael Monfils - returned to the top 20. Dimitrov climbed three spots to No. 18 and Monfils moved up two positions to No. 20.

Outside the top 20, John Isner and Lorenzo Sonego climbed four spots to No. 22 and No. 23 respectively; for Sonego, this is a new career-high. Meanwhile France's Ugo Humbert moved up three positions to No. 26, one position below his best ranking of No. 25.

Ashleigh Barty begins 90th week as World No. 1

Ashleigh Barty at the Tokyo Olympics
Ashleigh Barty at the Tokyo Olympics

On the WTA tour, Ashleigh Barty began her 55th consecutive week and 90th overall at the top of the rankings list. Barty's reign at No. 1 is already the ninth longest in women's tennis history, and the Australian is closing in on Lindsay Davenport (98 weeks) in that count.

Barty extended her lead over the No. 2 ranked player to more than 3,000 points by winning the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati on Sunday. She now heads into the US Open as the firm favorite on the women's side.

Aryna Sabalenka, meanwhile, has replaced Naomi Osaka to reach a new career-high ranking of No. 2. Osaka failed to defend her runner-up points from Cincinnati last year, and will head to the New York Slam with the possibility of meeting Barty before the final.

The Japanese is followed, in order, by Karolina Pliskova, Sofia Kenin, Elina Svitolina, Bianca Andreescu, Iga Switaek, Barbora Krejcikova (+1, new career-high) and Garbine Muguruza (-1).

Angelique Kerber, the Cincinnati semifinalist, has climbed up five spots to No. 17 while Paula Badosa, who reached the quarters, has moved up three places to a new career-high of No. 26. Jil Teichmann, the runner-up at Cincinnati, has jumped 32 positions to No. 44 after the best week of her career.

Edited by Musab Abid

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