The appointment with “Numeri”, the column by Ferruccio Roberti is back: following the rise of Daniil Medvedev to the position of number one in the world, officially matured last Monday 28 February, here is an in-depth analysis that compares his data with Roger’s ones FedererRafael NadalAndy Murray and Novak Djokovicthe Fab Four who have dominated tennis for the past 18 years and of which the Russian has broken the dominance at the top of the rankings.
27 – The number one in the ATP ranking, the ranking of men’s professional tennis. For ten days, Daniil Medvedev has officially managed to put an end to the undisputed interregnum of the so-called Fab Four – Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray – started on February 4, 2004: eighteen years and a month during which these great champions have passed between them the number 1 in the world. Roger was first in the ATP rankings in six different periods for a total of 310 weeks (and holds the all-time record for consecutive Mondays in command, 237); while Rafa in the last eighteen years has become so in eight different moments for a total of 209. The third of them in chronological order to have risen to number 1, Djokovic, has been so for five different times, totaling 361 weeks (absolute record) and Finally, Murray won the top spot in the period between November 2016 and August 2017, adding up a total of 41 weeks. To understand a little better how incredible their career has been, just think that in November 2000, when the hegemony of Pete Sampras (the third player ever to have the longest stay at number 1, 286 weeks) ended, six colleagues – that is, one more of the five that followed in the following eighteen years – followed in first place in the ranking: Safin, Kuerten, Hewitt, Agassi, Ferrero and Roddick, with A-Rod who was the last non-European ATP number 1 player and at the same time the sixth American player after Connors, McEnroe, Courier, Sampras and Agassi.
On February 28th, 943 weeks after Federer’s first time as first in the world, the new ATP ranking officially sanctioned Medvedev’s number 1, who still has to play with this status: he will do so in these days at Indian Wells (e.g. Acapulco played with the certainty of becoming one, but it was only virtually). To find out more about the great climb in the ranking made by the Moscow tennis player, we went to compare the numbers he had with those held by the Fab Four the first time they rose to first place, also because, being the closest to Medvedev, they played with a scoring system extremely similar to the current one (in particular since 2009, when the Masters 1000 were born with the relative points rules and the locations still in place today).
|Tennis player||Age # 1||Previous weeks in the top 10||W / L in 52 weeks previous||Overall W / L ATP ** before becoming n. 1|
|Federer||22 years, 5 months and 5 days||78||80-14||243-110|
|Nadal||22 years, 2 months and 15 days||173||81-14||323-74|
|Djokovic||24 years, 1 month 12 days||224||79-8||372-106|
|Murray||29 years 5 months and 3 days||442||80-12||625-174|
|Medvedev||26 years and 17 days||137||64-15||233-101|
As we can also read from the tables we have prepared, Federer rose to number 1 in the world at the age of 22 thanks above all to the points guaranteed by the titles won at the Australian Open and, in the previous season, at the ATP Finals and Wimbledon. His was a very fast rise: Roger entered the top ten for the first time in May 2001, barely 21, thanks to the tournament he won in Hamburg, which redeemed an initially not brilliant relationship with the last act of the tournaments (he had only won two of the first eight finals played, including the one in Milan, where in February 2001 he won the first of the current 103 titles of his glorious career).
The situation is different for Nadal, who became number 1 at a slightly earlier age than Federer: he succeeded in August 2008, a season during which he was almost unplayable. Rafa starting from the first round in Miami of that year brings home 54 of the 57 games played positively by putting on the bulletin board the titles of Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Hamburg, Roland Garros, Queens, Wimbledon (at the end of the legendary final with Federer), Toronto and the Beijing Olympic Games. Above all, unlike Roger, as can also be seen from our tables, Rafa has already been in the top ten for almost three and a half years and has already won a lot: 5 Grand Slams and 12 Masters 1000.
The data relating to the Slams, Masters 1000 and other tournaments in the table below indicate those won in the 52 weeks prior to the first from number 1, compared to the overall career up to that moment
|Tennis player||vs Top10 in 52 weeks previous||vs overall Top10||Slam||1000||Other tournaments|
** The reference date was taken as the Monday in which the official ranking was released
Even more along the way of Novak Djokovic to arrive for the first time to be the tennis player with the best score in the ATP ranking: the Serbian tennis player succeeds in July 2011, at the age of 24 just over a month ago. Already since July 2007, with the exception of about twenty weeks, it has always been in the top 3, extremely prestigious range of classification to which he arrives instead with a great leap (he was not in the top ten until Indian Wells fifteen years ago, where he loses quite clearly from Nadal in the final). Nole conquers the number 1 in the world thanks to an extraordinary first part of 2011, during which he reaches a performance that sees him lose only one game between the defeat suffered at the ATP Finals 2010 against Federer and the final lost with Murray in Cincinnati: among these two matches he wins 59 and loses only one, the Roland Garros semi against the Swiss champion. In the first eight months of 2011 Djokovic won the Australian Open, Wimbledon, five Masters 1000 and after the London Grand Slam he crowned his run for first place in the ranking.
Andy Murray has already won 625 games in the major circuit and is on the threshold of enta when he snatches first place from Djokovic at the end of October 2016: the Scotsman is already an undisputed idol at home after being in July 2013 the first Briton to win Wimbledon after the success of Fred Perry, dated 1936 (that victory of the Championships is for him the second Slam brought home after the success achieved a few month prior to US Open 2012). Curiosity: just a few weeks after reaching the top of the ranking he was among other things awarded the coveted title of Knighthood of the Order of the British Empire, following which he will become “Sir” Andy Murray. The Scot to get to number 1 unites a series of extraordinary successes: he does an encore at Wimbledon and in the singles at the Olympic Games (he wins in Beijing, after having done so in 2012 in London) and, after having imposed himself in the previous months also at the Internationals of ‘Italy and at Queen’s, in a final sprint that – starting from the Asian “swing” up to the ATP Finals won at home at the O2 Arena in London – sees him unbeaten in the last 23 games played in 2016 (five of which against top ten) .
FERRUCCIO ROBERTI’S PAGE 2 OF THE “NUMBERS” COLUMN BELOW